I found a safe way to string lights up into my trees!

Central, AL(Zone 8a)

With the demise of Daylight Savings Time I decided to string some white lights up into my maple trees. I put up an extension ladder but it was kind of wobbly plus I am not as comfortable climbing up into the trees as in past years. So I had this idea and it worked:

I cut both ends out of an empty 3-pound coffee can. I unrolled a long lenght of sisal twine and tied one end through the can. I hurled the can over a branch, then tied the loose end to the receptacle end of a light string and hauled it up over the branch with the twine. Then I took the coffe can and hurled it out over another branch and advanced the light string forward to follow the sisal. As the plug end of the string advanced I added another string. In this way I was able to drape lights far out onto my tree limbs without ever climbing, even spanning lines from tree to tree. The cutout coffee can had little wind resistance, being open on both sides and was heavy enough to reliably come down again dragging the sisal behind, but light enough for me to hurl repeatedly.

A few times of course the sisal snagged and the can swung back toward me but I wore safety glasses and the can wasn't heavy enough to hurt me if it struck me. Theoretically the line could stick in the tree and have to be cut but I used a biodegradable product.

This method could also be used to hang other garden ornaments way up high without risking a fall.

So. Puget Sound, WA(Zone 8b)

Um, pink. I'm trying to visualize this. Are you pulling the light string along the branches? They don't get caught up?

Central, AL(Zone 8a)

Surprisingly they don't. Once you can get the end of the strand over a branch, and keep the momentum going, the whole bunch glides over. It works for those miniature Christmas lights; I don't know about anything larger. Try it on some lower branches and you will see.

The only thing that concerns me now is getting them down; I should have taped them where one plugs into another because if they become unplugged when I am tugging them back down it could "strand" some strands up in the tree.

So. Puget Sound, WA(Zone 8b)

LOL I didn't think of that! Thanks. I'm trying to find an easy, safe way to put up Christmas lights in some trees. Whatever I do I will tape the ends together.

Lincoln Park, MI(Zone 5a)

Pink with that idea...are you able to get the lights to the top???I think I might do a practice on that idea...sure don't want to cut of branches..........to get the lights off..!!

Central, AL(Zone 8a)


I can get lights as high as I can throw the coffee can. If I wanted to go higher I certainly could...Yeah! Get a bow and arrow and shoot it waay up with the twine hanging off the back of ther arrow! But that could get kinda dangerous unless they make rubber-tipped arrows.

Lansing, KS(Zone 5b)

Passiflora~ a cute idea...the girly pumpkins wanted lites in the tree off the patio to pretend like they have a restaurant at night. Dad nixed the idea, told them to use the porch lite or the little garden lites. Now I could add some excitement and use your idea... but now that it's autumn.. they can serve hot chocolate to "their" diners! LOL! Thanks for sharing ! ;0)

Thornton, IL

Grrrrirls rule! Great idea pink, and very resourceful.

So. Puget Sound, WA(Zone 8b)

Just to add a note to this thread in case you have a "grabby" tree. Tie a green string to each end of the light strings. Don't tape the ends together. That way if it hangs up somewhere you have another access to the stuck string and can gently pull from both ends until it becomes free. I'll tie the string ends loosely so they don't get tangled while in the tree, perhaps add an unobtrusive weight to the dangling string end before I toss it.

Central, AL(Zone 8a)

Hey, thanks for the idea.

I'm gonna hang some suet blocks way up high using the same method so the possums can't steal them. It might even discourage the crows who tend to fly up from the ground.

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