How to String Lights on a Deciduous Tree to Make It Look Nice

Written by lane cummings
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How to String Lights on a Deciduous Tree to Make It Look Nice
Hanging lights on deciduous trees can easily make them look festive. (Jupiterimages/ Images)

When people think of the task of putting lights on a tree, they usually think of a coniferous tree such as a pine or a spruce at Christmastime. If you have deciduous trees in your outdoor space, however, you can make them look festive with lights at any time of year, not just during the holidays. A deciduous tree refers to a tree that loses its leaves during part of the year. Common examples of deciduous trees are oak and maple trees.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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Things you need

  • 3 packets bistro or globe lights
  • Ladder
  • 60- to 100-foot extension cord
  • Tape

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  1. 1

    Examine all of your lights to make sure none of them is damaged or broken. Some deciduous trees can grow to be 50 feet tall, and most homeowners don't have a ladder tall enough to accommodate such heights. Use the ladder that you do own or have access to and place it beside the tree on a completely level surface. You're going to decorate the lower to mid-level section of branches.

  2. 2

    Take one section of a string of lights and place it on the branches of the tree to the right and left of your ladder so that the string lights rest horizontally on the tree. You don't want the tree to hide the lights in any way, so move the lights to the outer portions of the branches. Make sure that the lights hang in obvious drapes in between branches so they are visible.

  3. 3

    Move the ladder a few paces to the right of where it originally was on the other side of the tree. Still holding the tail end of the string lights you were just using, drape that tail end on some branches and plug it into another set of string lights. Repeat the task of hanging new packs of string lights on some branches.

  4. 4

    Move the ladder to the right a final time. Grab the tail end of the second set of string lights and drape them on the next available branches. Connect the tail end to the plug of the final set of string lights. Hang these lights off the last available branches.

  5. 5

    Connect the tail end of this final set of lights to a 60- or 100-foot extension cord. Tape the extension cord against the tree so that the tree supports the cord and the weight of the extension cord does not pull any of the lights down. Run the extension cord to your power source and plug it in.

Tips and warnings

  • It's OK if you don't drape your lights perfectly. A draped, somewhat asymmetrical look is very artistic.
  • Always read the labels on your packets of bistro or string lights to double-check how many you can connect in a row. Generally, the maximum is three sets.
  • Don't hang lights higher unless you have a speciality ladder and feel absolutely comfortable being that high.

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