Mendham Garden Center
Route 24, Mendham, NJ
Spring Fertilizer

Broadcast Spreader Calibration

By, the Old Guy with the Pony Tail

Effective lawn care requires accurate granular product application. Broadcast spreader calibration is necessary for an effective application. The following procedures are one example of effective spreader calibration:

  1. Set your spreader to about 1/3 open. Example, if your spreader has a number system from 1 – 10, set it on about 3 ½. The reason for this is to minimize the risk of over application during the calibration process.
  2. Determine the spreading width of your spreader.  Put a small amount of the product in the spreader and spread at a comfortable walking speed. Always be careful to maintain a consistent walking speed, start walking before you open the gate valve and close the gate valve before you stop walking. This minimizes the chance of over application at the start and end of your spreader pass.  Most spreaders have an effective spreading width of 65% to 75% of the total spreading width.


If your spreader spreads a given material 12 feet total, you will need to make your spreading passes 8 to 9 feet apart with an overlap of material in between.

  • Using 9’ as the “effective” spreading width. Pace off 111’. This will give you an area of approximately 1000 sq. feet or 9’ x 111’.
  • Based on the product label; determine the amount of product to apply per thousand square feet.
  • Weigh out that amount of product using a small scale and put it in the spreader.
  • Walking at your consistent speed, spread the material over the area you paced off.
  • Readjust the spreader setting accordingly to apply the correct amount product over the area.


  1. When calibrating, use an area away from the main stream lawn area.
  2. Do not use the same area twice when calibrating
  3. Always calibrate based on pounds of product required per thousand square feet.
  4. Keep a record of the product and the spreader setting, for future reference.
  5. Always spread parallel to your previous pass utilizing your previous wheel marks as a reference.
  6. If your wheel marks aren’t visible use flags to identify the beginning and end of each pass.

“Calibrations’ easy

It doesn’t take that long.

To make your lawn look lush and green

Just do more right than wrong.”

As a leading lawn care provider in Mendham, Chester, and Annandale, Mendham Garden Center offers a wide range of services to help you achieve your lawn care goals. Whether you need insect control, lawn thatching, or any other lawn care services, we have the expertise and tools to get the job done right. Don’t hesitate to contact us today at:

973.543.4178 for Mendham

908.879.5020 for Chester

908.730.9008 for Annandale.

Let us help you create the perfect outdoor space you’ve always dreamed of!

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