If you are wondering how to wrap trees with Christmas lights, there are some basic measurements that you need to take into consideration. Measure the circumference of the tree trunk, as well as the circumference and count of any branches you wish to wrap with lights. Determine how much spacing you want both between each light bulb on the string, as well as how far apart you plan to wrap the light strings.
A 6" bulb spacing is popular for wrapping trunks and branches, with an average spacing of 2-3" between strings. Divide height by desired string spacing, multiply total by circumference to calculate total string length needed. Example: we have a 4'H trunk that measures 2' in circumference, and we plan to wrap four of the stronger branches, which measure 3'L and 6" in circumference. Use this equation to learn how to wrap a tree with lights:
View our Light Calculation Charts for how many lights are needed on trees.
Total power available should also be taken into consideration when wrapping. If using commercial mini light strings, up to 10 100-bulb count strings can be connected, or 420 watts. If using premium mini lights, up to six 100-bulb count strings can be connected. LED lights typically allow up to 43 light strings, or 210 watts, to be connected, so there is rarely a concern of plugging to many LED strands together. Switch to energy saving LED lights to allow for maximum light counts.
Most trees are wrapped the length of the trunk and approximately 3-4' high in the extending branches. Not every branch needs to be wrapped, and branches should be selected to allow for an even, pleasing distribution of light. Wrapping trees is much easier with two people, and by keeping the string in a neat ball. The following steps are the easiest way to wrap trees:
The following DIY image tutorial used a single 70 count LED light string and wrapped a trunk approximately 4'H and 10" diameter, as well as two branches. A tighter wrap and more branch coverage is recommended.
Step 1. Create a ball of lights to make wrapping easier, connect male plug to power source at base of tree
Here are some tips for wrapping evergreens:
Evergreens retain most of their leaves during winter and include Spruce, Pine, and Firs, as well as other varieties. Using our Recommended Number of Lights can help in determining how many light strings are needed, as well as which size bulb. Lights should be checked before installation, especially when lighting larger trees that will be almost impossible to fix once all the light strings are on. 3-Way splitters and power taps may be needed to extend outlets up the length of taller trees.
For the fastest, cleanest method, choose Christmas net lights for bushes and hedges. If you prefer to wrap trees with outdoor tree lights:
Have fun with tree lighting schemes. Fun ideas to add to outdoor trees include:
Experiment with these lights and mix and match to create unforgettable trees.
When wrapping Christmas trees for indoor use, one of the main goals should be to keep wires as concealed as possible. Wrapping tree branches instead of simply draping lights results in a beautiful, even distribution of lighting.
With all of this information, now you know how to string Christmas lights on outdoor trees and indoor trees.
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Light calculations for outdoor and indoor trees, with number of lights for different size bulbs. Make sure you have enough lights on hand to wrap every tree!
Ideas for decorating the lawn this holiday season, including hanging stars from trees, lighting fences, and wrapping prelit garland on columns..
Learn more about wattage and amperage on Christmas lights, including how many lights you can run on a single outlet and how many strings can be connected together.