One of the hassles of maintaining a garden is the regular handling of seeds and fertilizers. Some fertilizers are toxic and can cause skin irritation from the touch. Herein, using a spreader can make the task of lawn maintenance much easier.
Scotts is one of the best spreader brands. To use them effectively, it’s important to know the Scotts spreader settings well.
So, in this guide, we’ll talk about what the setting means and how you should adjust the numbers depending on your work context.
Spreaders 101 – Knowing the Basics
Before talking about the settings of a Scotts spreader, let’s have some ideas on some basics about spreaders in general;
A spreader is a simple tool that has one main job: to evenly spread seeds and fertilizers on the ground. It can spread anything you want to apply in soil with consistency. Applying with your hand isn’t hard, but if you want to maintain the proportions, then a spreader has no alternative.
Types of Spreaders
Spreaders are mainly of two types; drop and broadcast.
Broadcast spreaders have two subtypes: handheld, and walk-behind. Which one you choose depends on your specific needs as well as the plot size you’ll be working on.
To make things clear to you, let’s discuss both the types of spreaders below;
1. Drop Spreader
A drop spreader works by dropping the seeds through a dropper. These droppers tend to be small, and this is quite helpful for working in space-constrained areas. A mini garden or a yard that isn’t too big can be easily covered with a drop spreader.
Drop spreaders are easy to use as there aren’t any complicated controls involved. The machine does one job, and it does it right. But since these machines are small, it can take you quite some time to cover a land, especially if it’s large.
There’s no option in a drop spreader to adjust the rate of seed dropping. However, precise control can be achieved by moving fast or slow. The seeds drop at a stable rate. So, if you want a ground to cover with more seeds, walk slowly over the area. And if you want less seed coverage, walk fast.
2. Broadcast Spreader
As the name suggests, a broadcast spreader has a broadcasting fan under the seed holder of this machine. As the wheels turn, the gears rotate a fan placed in the middle between the wheels and the seed holder. Seeds continuously drop on the rotor blades, and the blades throw them in a broadcasting fashion. Here is a list of the best tow behind broadcast spreader on the current market.
One major issue with using a broadcast spreader is the inability to have precise control over the drop rates. The rotors can easily spread the seeds to a greater distance even when the wheel speed is slow.
If you live near a waterway or beside a road, it’s important to keep the seeds inside the yard boundaries. Especially if you’re spreading fertilizers or pesticides this way, be very careful not to drop these anywhere near water areas.
How many seeds you’ll distribute with a broadcast spreader depends on two things: how fast you move and the size of the dropper hole. Some spreaders have adjustable holes to control drop rates. Even if your spreader doesn’t have this, you can still get a drop hole modifier.
The faster you walk, the more the wheels on this machine spins. The higher the spin rate, the higher the rotor speed and seed spread rate. These machines are more complicated to use than drop spreaders. Therefore, you should read the manual well before knowing about the drop rates and drop hole size adjustment.
Okay, enough with the basics. Let’s talk about Scotts spreader settings.
What Do the Numbers Mean on a Scotts Spreader?
What the numbers mean on a scotts spreader depends on one major thing; the type of spreader. If you’ve got a regular broadcast spreader, the number means Scotts spreader settings lbs per 1000 square feet area.
If you’re using a push broadcast spreader and want to seed a land for the first time, you can set a drop rate number somewhere between 7-8. If the land is not new, the setting can be somewhere between 4/5.
On the other hand, a handheld spreader drops seeds at a much dense rate. You should set a number around 3/4 while working with one. Increasing the setting number will result in an excessive seed drop rate, which can be bad for the soil. And the seeds will go to waste anyway.
Scotts Spreader Settings for Grass Seed
Unlike other seeds, grass seeds can damage a land immediately if they’re overseeded. Grass grows fast and takes a lot of nutrition out of the soil. Follow the regular settings mentioned in the previous point to adjust the grass seed drop rate.
It’s important to drop grass seeds in an area that gets proper shade and water drainage. Lack of these two can result in dead grass and an overgrowth of weed. You should always clean the garden off of the weed and large grasses, before planting the new grass seeds. Doing so will help maintain better grass growth.
Scotts Broadcast Spreader Settings for Lime
One easy way to control lime application is by covering a spreader hole until only the 1/3rd part of it is open. Lime adds minerals to the soil and, if applied unbalanced, can wreak havoc on plant growth.
Spreader Settings for 10-10-10, 13-13-13, and Lesco Fertilizer
The setting for application of these fertilizers should be similar to the setting for lime application. Herein, the rules are not universal, and you should always check the fertilizer manufacturer’s manual before adjusting the setting. Otherwise, follow lime settings.
Settings for Urea and Salt
Use a setting number of about 5 or 4 to apply urea with a Scotts spreader. You can choose a similar setting for salt application. Many people don’t prefer salt application through a spreader, but there’s nothing wrong if you can adjust the settings well.
Scotts Spreader Settings For Ryegrass and Pre-emergent Seeds
Choose a setting number of anywhere between 10 to 15 sizes for applying Ryegrass and Pre-emergent Seeds.
The sizing ideas given in this guide aren’t universal and only meant to give you some fundamental ideas. You should check seed and fertilizer manuals before adjusting the setting. It’s unlikely to make a mistake in soil maintenance when you know all the Scotts spreader settings as well as the fertilizer manual.