Best Fertilizer Spreader: Top 4 for Effortless Fertilization

Best Fertilizer Spreader: Top 4 for Effortless Fertilization

10 min read

We all know the secret to a lush green yard is maintaining it and giving it the care we would give to our pets. Like any other living thing, our yards need food to grow, including fertilizers.

Once you prepare your soil, you will need to lay out the grass or lawn seeds and fertilize the ground. In the olden times, people used to do it manually with their hands, but it was time-consuming and often resulted in uneven grass. This is where a fertilizer spreader comes in and makes your life easier.

What is a Fertilizer Spreader?

A fertilizer spreader, also known as a lawn spreader, makes spreading products more precise and completes your task quicker. A spreader has a hopper that will hold your product and an opening to it that is adjustable to control the volume of product you want to spread. It is ideally used to apply seeds, granules, fertilizers, and other refined grains.

You can choose from three different types of spreaders to fit your needs. They all are effective in their ways and will help you with your garden chores.

A golden tip we want to give you is always to use the spreader on solid ground first to check if the spreader settings are perfect for your yard or not. Then, you can use the spreader to disperse salt on the walk or driveways.

How We've Made Our Selection

With numerous lawn spreaders available on the market, we understand it can be overwhelming to choose one, so we conducted rigorous research to save you time and help you find the best lawn spreader. It's essential to get a suitable lawn spreader for your tasks and according to your requirements. A few things you need to look into in detail while choosing the best one suitable for you are mentioned in this article below, like their type, size, capacity, and coverage area.

Scotts is one of the leading producers of lawn equipment and is favored by the masses. They make a variety of lawn spreaders which all work amazingly in their way. Surprisingly, most of the products our team shortlisted are by Scotts. So, you can trust our review and choose one from it according to your specifications of the lawn.

Best Overall- 1. Scotts Elite Spreader
Best Budget-Friendly- 2. Scotts Turf Builder EdgeGuard Mini Spreader
Best Handheld Spreader-3. Scotts Wizz Spreader
Best Tow Behind Spreader- 4. Chapin Tow Behind Spreader

4 Best Fertilizer Spreaders

What We Love

  • Dual rotor technology.
  • 6 ft spread pattern and 20,000 sq. ft. compartment.
  • Foam-filled tires so that they won't go flat.
  • The ergonomic handle provides the utmost comfort.
  • Smartphone holder.

What to Keep in Mind

  • Although it features a large compartment for the product, don't fill it thoroughly, as it may become harder to push.

Scotts is the "lawn care guru of lawn care gurus." They believe it is not just about gardening but a chance to connect with people and improve the environment by making the earth more clean and green.

The Elite spreader is the most innovative and accurate spreader that Scott has ever manufactured. It has a 20% faster application that can be used all year round according to the season of seeding, feeding, weeding, and melting. It has dual rotor technology, which has a 6ft spread pattern. Compared to the Scotts Classic Drop Spreader, this model can hold around 20,000 sq. ft. of product, varying from grass seed, salt, fertilizer, or ice melt. The size of the pattern and compartment saves you time and will get your job in one go.

Scotts Elite Spreader features an ergonomic handle that will provide you with the utmost comfort. It also has an added feature, a smartphone holder. In addition, the tires of the spreader are 10-inch and are filled with foam, so you won't have to worry about it going flat.

Assembling the spreader is no big deal as it already comes preassembled. All you must do is fit the tires; voila, you are done! The size of the spreader is also compact, with a handle that folds down, so storing it is also not an issue.

What We Love

  • It comes fully assembled and pre-calibrated.
  • Easy storage as it has a fold-down handle.
  • Can hold up to 5,000 sq. ft. of product.
  • EdgeGuard blocks the spreader pattern's right side to prevent the development from going to no-grass areas.
  • Open Spoke tires that won't become flat.

What to Keep in Mind

  • It has been advised not to use the spreader for dispersing rock salt.
  • The plastic wheels might need to be fixed on very rough terrain.

If you are on a tighter budget, Scotts Turf Builder EdgeGuard Mini is your holy grail! All you have to do is fill in the fertilizer, set the spreader settings, and go.

What's impressive about this spreader is it is ready to use as soon as you take it out of the box. Thus, you don't need to read manuals or look at videos to set it up; it comes fully assembled and pre-calibrated. Furthermore, storing it is so easy as it has a fold-down handle.

The control dial lets you set the setting you need according to your yard for even coverage. In addition, the curved hopper and dual-bladed agitator make the spreading process smooth and efficient.

If you want the product to not disperse onto any no-grass area, then all you must do is engage the EdgeGuard. It will then block the right side of the spreader pattern. The open-spoke plastic wheels work smoothly on almost all grounds and will never become flat.

Best Handheld Spreader

For a hand-powered model, check out Scotts Whirl.

Check Price on Amazon

What We Love

  • Battery-powered handheld spreader.
  • Capacity of 2,500 sq. ft.
  • Twenty-three settings for unbeatable accuracy.
  • 5 ft broadcast with control of EdgeGuard technology.

What to Keep in Mind

  • A few of the customers stated that their hoppers jammed when they used it spread sand or salt.

If you have a small lawn and are on a budget, then Scotts Wizz Spreader is what you need. It is one of the best handheld options available on the market today. Just like the other Scotts spreader, it comes fully assembled.

According to the manufacturer, this is the most advanced spreader yet, as it is battery-powered. So, it gets the job done quicker and with much ease. You can use it to feed, seed, weed, or melt your lawn all year round.

The spreader can hold about 2,500 sq. ft. of product, which is ideal for small to medium size lawns. The spreader has 23 settings to choose from for unbeatable precision. It also features a 5-foot broadcast with control of EdgeGuard technology.

What We Love

  • 14 inches pneumatic tires.
  • Auto-stop dual impeller, which stops spreading when not moving.
  • No wastage of seeds or fertilizers.
  • It can be used for a professional trailer hitch, as it comes with two hitch pins.
  • Oil-infused bronze bearings.
  • Made of a steel frame that is also powder coated.
  • Eleven incremental gate settings that help with even spreading.

What to Keep in Mind

  • It is advised not to be used with lime products, such as lime powder, Agri lime, and pelletized lime.

Chapin is a USA corporation headquartered in Batavia, New York. They have been manufacturing sprayers, spreaders, and other accessories for over a century in the USA. They employ the best workers who know about what they are producing.

The spreader features wild-tread 14 inches pneumatic tires that can be used on any terrain.

The spreader has an Auto-stop dual impeller which will stop spreading the product when it's not moving, so there will be no wastage of seed or fertilizer, and you won't even have to worry about bending and pushing the stop button instantly. This will save you from long-term back aches because of turning each time to control the spreader. The Tow Behind Spreader has oil-infused bronze bearings that reduce resistance on the axle and gearbox. The spreader is built with a rugged steel frame, so you won't have to worry about it cracking or bending after a few uses. Additionally, it is powder coated for rust resistance.

Types Of Fertilizer Spreaders

There are mainly three types of spreaders: drop, broadcast, and handheld. They all have different unique features, drawbacks, and effectiveness levels. Choosing the right one for you depends on your set of specifications for your jobs.

Broadcast Lawn Spreader (Rotary Spreader)

Broadcast lawn spreaders (also known as rotary spreaders) will spread the product in large amounts. Different types of broadcast spreaders are available on the market, but they all have one thing in common: size.

The broadcast spreader disperses the product in a fan-like pattern from the front, bottom, and side, thus covering a more prominent space area. Due to this factor, it's best to cover a large-scale area. This spreader comes with a dial to control the amount of product you want to spread. You can use this spreader by manually pushing or carrying it behind a lawn mower or ATV if you own one but do remember the speed at which you spread also matters how much product will be dispersed. So, it would be best if you had a steady pace for even distribution.

Drop Lawn Spreader

Unlike the broadcast spreader, the product comes out from the bottom of the hopper. That's it is named drop lawn spreader, as it looks like the product is dropping. It can be used by manually pushing or towing behind the ATV or lawn mower like the broadcast spreader.

Drop spreaders are known to be very accurate as they disperse even rows of product precisely where you want them to. However, they are a very detail-intensive spreader. You can spread the product in one use or by adjusting the flow rate. What you can do is overlap wheel markers to make sure the fertilizer is evenly distributed. As the product dispersed is lesser in quantity, it's ideal for a medium-scale area or yards with obstructions like bird baths, statues, or any other objects that can't be moved.

Handheld Spreader

Like the drop spreader, handheld spreaders also spreads the product from the bottom; the only difference is that it is manually spun. Its size and effectiveness make it ideal for small yards, gardens, or flower beds. The handheld spreader is the most reasonable and portable compared to other types of spreaders.

It operates by manual winding to distribute the product. When the product is released from the bottom of the handheld spreader, the rotary paddle will push the product in small and rigid strips. It is believed that they are not likely to distribute evenly because they are handheld higher off the ground, and there is a risk of product gliding.

Buyer's Guide

If you think of it, the lawn spreader has a few features that one can investigate, but all of them need to match your criteria. Therefore, we have listed all the essential aspects of lawn spreaders to make it simpler for you to choose the right one.

Type of the Spreader

Choosing the type of spreader mostly depends on the size of the area you will work on. If you are a professional gardener and work on a large lawn area, you should look for a Broadcast spreader. If the size is medium to small, then choose the Drop lawn spreader. Most homeowners have a very small-scale garden with obstacles in between. For that, we advise you to get a Handheld spreader.

Coverage Area

The coverage area is essential when deciding on a fertilizer spreader. Just like the type of spreader, the area matters a lot. If you must spread on a lawn up to 2,000 sq. ft., then a handheld spreader is best for you. If we increase the coverage area to around a max of 5,000 sq. ft., then any small walk-behind spreader will work for you. But, for a larger size, it's better to get a spreader that is towed behind.


The capacity of the spreader is the amount of product you can fill in the compartment. It can also give you an idea of the square footage the spreader will cover. Get a handheld spreader for small-scale areas and a tow-behind spreader for larger sizes.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which type of spreader is best for applying fertilizers?

Both broadcast and drop spreaders can be used for applying fertilizers, but the choice depends on the specific needs of your lawn. Broadcast spreaders are generally preferred for larger areas as they can quickly cover a wider area. Drop spreaders, on the other hand, are better suited for precise applications, especially when dealing with narrow strips or areas near flower beds or other sensitive areas.

What is the best residential push spreader?

The best residential push spreader can vary depending on personal preferences and specific needs. Some popular and well-regarded options in the market include brands like Scotts, Earthway, and Agri-Fab. It's recommended to consider factors such as capacity, durability, ease of use, and overall customer reviews when selecting the best residential push spreader for your needs.

Which is better, a broadcast or a drop spreader?

The choice between a broadcast and a drop spreader depends on the specific circumstances. Broadcast spreaders are generally more efficient for larger areas as they cover a wider swath in a single pass. They are ideal for distributing fertilizer, seed, or other granular products over a larger expanse of lawn. Drop spreaders provide more precise control and are better suited for smaller, more targeted areas where accuracy is crucial, such as near flower beds or sidewalks.

Is a drop spreader good for fertilizer?

Yes, drop spreaders are effective for applying fertilizer. They provide precise control and even distribution of the granular product directly beneath the spreader. This makes drop spreaders ideal for areas where accuracy is crucial, such as avoiding overspreading onto non-target areas or ensuring even coverage around landscaping features.

Can a tow-behind fertilizer spreader be attached to a lawn tractor?

Yes, tow-behind fertilizer spreaders are specifically designed to be attached to lawn tractors or other vehicles with a hitch. They are an excellent choice for larger areas or properties where pushing a spreader manually would be impractical. These spreaders can handle larger capacities and are commonly used for fertilizing large lawns, fields, or pastures. It's important to ensure that the spreader is compatible with your specific lawn tractor and follow the manufacturer's instructions for safe and proper attachment.

What Option of Best Fertilizer Spreader is Best for You?

We have presented several excellent options that cater to different needs and preferences. Ultimately, the choice boils down to your personal preference.

We hope this article has provided some valuable insights to help you decide on the best fertilizer spreader for your home.

Remember that what works for one person may not necessarily work for everyone, so choose wisely based on your specific requirements.

Items reviewed:

Best Overall- 1. Scotts Elite Spreader
Best Budget-Friendly- 2. Scotts Turf Builder EdgeGuard Mini Spreader
Best Handheld Spreader-3. Scotts Wizz Spreader
Best Tow Behind Spreader- 4. Chapin Tow Behind Spreader

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