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Fertilizer Spreaders

1. Q. Do you suggest the use of a fertilizer spreader to distribute the slow release sulfur-coated fertilizer you recommended or can one just throw the fertilizer out?

A. A drop spreader evenly distributes materials directly beneath the hopper. This provides accuracy in placing material precisely where it is needed. Seeds or granules pass through a series of opening at the bottom of the hopper, with rate of application determined by the size of the holes and the position of the shutoff bar. Obviously, these parts of the spreader must be precisely manufactured of quality materials in order to consistently deliver even applications.

Rotary spreaders "broadcast" material in a circle around the spreader. With a quality rotary, distribution will be "feathered" near the outer edge of the circle. By overlapping the edge on the next pass, the concentration of material evens out and the lawn gets even feeding. This method is more forgiving of application error than a drop spreader.

Rotary spreaders allow an effective pattern ranging from 30 inches to 8 feet -- depending on the type used. This wide swath makes lawn applications faster. The coverage allowed by the drop spreader is determined by the width of the hopper.

No matter which type of spreader you prefer to use, there are some guidelines you should follow when spreading lawn products:

When you are finished, pour all remaining material back into the bag and tightly reseal. Then, wash your spreader thoroughly and let it dry out completely in the sun.

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