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Expert Shopper Lawn & Garden

Best fertilizer spreader

Which fertilizer spreaders are best?

The right fertilizer has been known to significantly increase crop yields and is responsible for producing food that can feed more people, so it should be no surprise that it can also be used to bring out the best in your lawn or garden.

You don’t need to be a lawncare expert or a landscaper because it’s easier than ever to apply fertilizer if you have the right equipment. Choices may vary depending on your needs, but a top pick is Scotts 76565 Turf Builder Classic Drop Spreader

What to know before you buy a fertilizer spreader

Types of fertilizer spreaders

  • Handheld spreaders: For smaller gardens, lawns or areas where only limited patching of bare spots is needed, a handheld spreader is a cost-effective, hands-on option. They are easy to use, portable, lightweight and come in both manual or battery powered. However, they aren’t good for large areas and will require a battery replacement. 
  • Drop spreaders: These deposit fertilizer and seeds for broad coverage. This is a top choice for gardens, flower beds and lawns that have odd shapes. They are available in both the tow-behind and push models, but sometimes they require more passes to provide adequate coverage.  
  • Broadcast spreaders: Alternatively known as rotary spreaders, they provide an easy-to-use option that is great for covering large amounts of land. These can be more expensive and are not ideal for the specific distribution of fertilizer and seeds.
  • Liquid spreaders: These are a great option for potted plants and container gardens, which specifically require a liquid version of fertilizer. They offer a very quick application, although they’re not very accurate. If you’re in the market for garden fertilizer, take a look at the buying guide for best garden fertilizers on Best Reviews. 

Benefits of fertilizer spreaders

  • Time: A fertilizer spreader is much less time-consuming than manual fertilizing, especially if you have a very large lawn or garden. 
  • Even distribution: A spreader allows you to evenly distribute fertilizer over a large area of land much better than if you were trying to do it manually. Fertilizer can be expensive, and that can add up over time if you’re using too much.  
  • Skin protection: Some fertilizers contain harsh chemicals that can cause irritation when coming in contact with your skin. A spreader keeps you at a safe distance from these chemicals.

What to look for in a quality fertilizer spreader  


The size of the area you need to fertilize should help determine the type of spreader you purchase. The bigger the spreader, the more it can hold and the less you have to refill it. 


Are you looking to save money, or do you want a product that will last? A plastic spreader will be less expensive, but a steel spreader is more durable and can last multiple years. 


It’s not just the size of a spreader and how much fertilizer it can hold that’s important, it’s how much ground you can cover with each pass. Different spreaders allow you to adjust the width of the spread. 

How much you can expect to spend on a fertilizer spreader

A quality basic home spreader will range from $20-$50 and can handle space of 2,500 square feet. For larger lawns or commercial and professional use, fertilizer spreaders range between $50-$300.

Fertilizer spreader FAQ 

How often should I clean the fertilizer spreader?

A. You should clean your spreader after each use to avoid wear and tear and any contamination if you later change up fertilizer. Lubricating the wheels can help it to move easily and smoothly, so it will last. 

Can my fertilizer spreader be used for grass seed as well? 

A. It is possible to use the fertilizer spreader for seeds, but depending on the size and texture of those seeds, it may not flow as evenly through the spreader since that’s not what it is designed for. 

Is fertilizer dangerous to kids or animals? 

A.  Spreading fertilizer is safe. However, it is recommended to wait 24 hours before allowing kids or pets on the lawn.

What’s the best fertilizer spreader to buy? 

Top fertilizer spreader

Scotts 76565 Turf Builder Classic Drop Spreader

What you need to know: Experienced gardeners will agree that this mid-range model is a quality product. This top-selling fertilizer spreader easily handles medium to large lawns.

What you’ll love: This spreader comes assembled, so you can easily use it right away. This has the capacity to cover up to 10,000 square feet while maintaining precise distribution. 

What you should consider: Although this model comes pre-calibrated, some customers mentioned it functioned better after re-calibrating.

Where to buy: Amazon

Top fertilizer spreader for the money

Scotts Turf Builder EdgeGuard Mini Broadcast Spreader

What you need to know: This budget-conscious fertilizer spreader is good quality and has the capacity to meet the needs of most consumers.

What you’ll love: This model comes pre-calibrated, completely assembled and is also collapsible for easy storage. It holds enough fertilizer to distribute over 5,000 square feet and can also work to treat smaller areas. 

What you should consider: Some customers feel the distribution is uneven when fertilizing larger areas. 

Where to buy: Amazon

Worth checking out

Brinly BS36BH Tow-Behind Broadcast Spreader

What you need to know: This is a fan-favorite for those who want to cut down the time of spreading fertilizer on large areas of land over an acre. 

What you’ll love: This spreader is long-lasting, durable and constructed with top-of-the-line 

materials. With a patented auto flow spread control, this model offers professional-grade results.

What you should consider: Although this is a high-quality spreader for larger areas, the same results may not apply for smaller areas. You should be sure you purchase a spreader that meets the specifics of your lawn or garden.

Where to buy: Amazon


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Ryan Dempsey writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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