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Which Seed Spreader Do I Need?

Different types of grass seed spreader - Boston Seeds

Finding the right lawn seed spreader can be a game-changer when it comes to your gardening needs. While seed spreaders are most often used for grass seeds or fertiliser, they actually have a whole variety of uses! 

You can use a seed spreader to spread wildflower seeds and they can even be used to spread salt in the icy seasons. Here, we’ll walk you through some of the most common questions to help you figure which seed spreader is best for your needs.


What is the best grass seed spreader?

For larger areas, broadcast grass seed applicators are always a popular choice as they can spread grass seed quickly and evenly. This saves hours of time, even when spreading seed over larger areas such as paddocks, roadside verges, lawns and gardens. 

For more confined areas, or when you only want to plant in a specific area, drop spreaders are a wonderful choice. They offer a more accurate spread at only a slightly reduced speed. 

Ultimately, the best seed spreader will entirely depend on what you wish to use it for, and the size of the area you’re working in.


Best seed spreader for small lawns

When deciding on the right lawn spreader for small gardens, it’s important to find one that can easily navigate the space. Models like the BS Easy Spreader have been specifically designed with smaller gardens in mind, another option is a handheld seed spreader. Our handheld spreaders are rotary spreaders so, despite their small size they can still cover your lawn quickly and evenly. They’re also very popular as wildflower seed spreaders.


Best seed spreader for home use

The best at-home seed spreader will depend on the size of your garden and what you’re looking to sow. As mentioned above, handheld spreaders are suitable for small to medium-sized gardens. One of the main reasons people love them is that they don’t require much storage space, so you don’t need a large shed to keep them safe.

This doesn’t mean larger models aren’t suitable for home use though! Spreaders like the BS-2000 are drop spreaders that allow for precise application - perfect for ensuring you don’t overspill seeds onto your patio or borders.

Best hand spreader for grass seed

It might be that you don’t need the carrying capacity of towable seed spreaders or the precision of drop spreaders, in which case we recommend choosing a rotary seed spreader. 

Our BS125 hand spreader uses rotary technology and has the capacity to hold 1kg of seed, with an even spread of up to 2 metres. It’s perfectly sized not to be too heavy to handle, but large enough with the functionality to get the job done with ease. 


Best cheap seed spreader

There are many budget-conscious seed spreaders so you can find the balance between efficiency and price tag. Handheld spreaders are the cheapest option for seed spreaders and very storage-friendly. 

It’s also worth bearing in mind that using a seed spreader dramatically reduces the chances of you needlessly overspending on seed. Not only will it save you time but as it provides a more even, measured distribution compared to doing it by hand, a spreader will ultimately pay for itself in the long run.


What is a drop spreader?

A drop spreader offers more accurate coverage as greed seed, or fertiliser, falls between the wheels as you move along. As the name suggests, “dropping” the seed creates an even, measured line of coverage and reduces the chances of any seed going astray. 

The accuracy makes them ideal for small lawns or gardens with flowerbeds, patios or other obstacles to manoeuvre around. 

The best drop seed spreader

When choosing the right drop spreader, you need to take into account the size of the garden you’re working in. Drop spreaders are especially popular for sowing flower seeds as they can create neat lines of blossom. Options like the BS Easy Spreader give you accuracy whilst still allowing for quick and easy application.

Benefits of a drop seed spreader:

  • Spread grass seeds or fertiliser directly below the spreader hopper.
  • Precise drop application.
  • Ideal for smaller or irregular areas.
  • Easier to avoid contaminating ponds, borders or patios, etc.
  • Easier to calibrate accurately. 

What is a broadcast spreader?

When looking at drop vs broadcast spreader, it will normally come down to how important accuracy is. Also known as rotary spreaders, they ‘broadcast’ a measured amount of seeds out in all directions, so offer less precision but quicker overall coverage. 

The best broadcast spreader

Broadcast spreaders are available in handheld models as well as larger models. The right rotary seed spreader will depend on the size of lawn you need to cover. A larger model like the BS Seed & Fertiliser spreader offers quick, even application of seed and fertiliser on lawns, paddocks and orchards. 

Benefits of a broadcast spreader:

  • Spread grass seeds or fertiliser by using a spinning disc.
  • Scatters seeds over an area.
  • Larger hoppers mean fewer refills.
  • Spread width is wider, allowing quicker coverage across larger areas.
  • Larger wheels travel better over uneven ground.
  • Available in handheld, push and towable models.

Can you use a seed spreader for fertiliser?

Yes! As we’ve mentioned already, we actually recommend that you use a spreader when applying fertiliser to ensure a uniform spread and to reduce clumping. Spreading fertiliser by hand makes it extremely difficult when it comes to even distribution - an uneven spread of fertiliser sets you up for uneven grass growth later down the line.

It’s important to note that seed spreaders are only designed to distribute small materials so you’ll need to use granulated fertiliser in a seed spreader. Depending on the area you wish to fertilise, both a broadcast fertiliser spreader and drop fertiliser spreader are suitable choices.

We have a helpful guide on how to choose the correct fertiliser for your garden needs.

Can you use a seed spreader to spread salt?

If it’s an especially icy season, you may want to spread salt on your driveway and paths leading up to your home to minimise the risk of slipping. While it’s not always advertised, you can use most seed spreaders to spread granular salt. In fact we recommend it, our BS Easy Spreader specifically states it can be used for granular salt.

Can you use a seed spreader for compost?

Seeds spreaders are designed to handle small dry materials, such as seeds and granulated fertiliser. We don’t recommend using compost in a seed spreader as there’s a good chance it will clog the spreader very quickly. 

If you find dry pellet compost, this may be suitable but where possible, we’d recommend using homemade compost to give your garden the nutrients it deserves. 


Still unsure which seed spreader is the right one for you? Get in touch with our expert team via email, phone or contact form who’ll be happy to help.