How To Hang String Lights In Backyard Without Trees

These days, many homeowners use string lights to beautify their backyards. Because they function as an additional lighting source, these basic yet elegant décor elements can improve the beauty of your backyard.

It gives your outdoor space a gleaming appearance, allowing you to enjoy your backyard more enjoyably at night. Installing a string light is a piece of cake, especially if you do as many do and use large trees.

However, if you don’t have any trees in your backyard to work with, then you want to hang your lights using alternative ways of how to hang patio lights.

string lights on house

Using our guide, you can see how you can effectively light your outdoor space and hang your lights in your backyard using many methods. By the end, you’ll see how using tools and materials that are easy to come by, you can string lights using the most basic supports. (Find the Best Battery Powered String Lights)

What Can I Use to Hang Outdoor String Lights?

String lights are a creative way to add a unique ambiance to your backyard.

Hanging them a tree is the most straightforward and common method, yet you can find many ways to hang lights without trees at all. Here are a few ways you can hang backyard string lights without trees.


One method will depend on the layout of your backyard, the location of any existing poles, or other supports. A fence can offer the ideal fixing point, especially if it runs along the side of your patio.

Select the area of fence you will be hanging string lights.

Lay the lights on the ground below your fence to see how you can hang the lights. It may be, you want to let the lights along your fence hang rather than be in a straight line.

Once you’ve got your layout, you can secure the lights with nails or metal hooks. It is possible to hang the lights over your fence posts if you don’t want to fix them in place.

The start of your lights needs to be close to a power source, or you’ll need an outdoor extension cord.

Patio or Deck

This outdoor space to hang string lights can be the best depending on the layout of your patio or deck.

Identify any wooden post you will use to create the layout. (You can even use metal poles supported in PVC pipe in the ground around your patio).

Lay the lights to check your layout.

You can use nails or metal hooks to hang the lights on the post, yet to keep it simple and use fewer materials, you can drape the lights around a wooden post, railings, or wooden beam around your deck. (Learn How to Keep Birds Out of Garden)

Other ways to create unique supports are to use PVC tubes, concrete, and wooden posts to make the supports you need. Posts and pillars on your porch shed or outbuildings can be used to attach your lights without using trees.

You can quickly find a tree isn’t the only option for hanging string lights. You can use planters, trellises, or any other stable fixtures in your garden.

If you don’t have natural support, you can make your own for hanging string lights.

One favored method uses buckets and poles which is better than sinking a pole in the ground. You can easily change your layout as you desire.

You can use wooden poles although hollow metal poles and PVC pipes work just as well.

Fill the buckets with gravel so it secures the pole in place or uses concrete if you want something more permanent.

Cut the poles to your selected height and place them in the bucket.

Fill using your heavy material and hang your lighting across each pole supports in your buckets.

string lights on fence

How Do You Support Outdoor String Lights?

Hanging outdoor string lighting is an easy project and can be done inside a day. Here are the steps you need to hang lights around your garden using a cable wire guide.

1. Measure & Preparation

  • String lights
  • Cable guide wire
  • Screw hooks
  • Cable clips
  • Wire cutters
  • Cable ties

The first step is to take your tape measure and measure for space for your hanging lights and cable guide wire. Make sure you have enough to loop at each mounting point as it eases tension. Order extra cable clips as you will use two on each span of cable along with your string lights and cable guidewire.

2. Mount Your Screw Hooks

Begin by installing your screw hooks in the secure mounting on one end before mounting them around your house and close to your power source. Rather than install in one line, you can install your lights around an open space in a zigzag pattern at the back of your house. Each line should be a separate cable, but they can share the same screw hook.

3. Connect & Tighten Cable

To start the cable, screw the hooks in place. Fasten the snap-hook to the cable guidewire.

Run the cable’s unfinished end through your final screw hook and loop it back via another cable clip. Once the cable is long enough, cut the wire to length. (Learn How to Get Nail Glue Off Skin)

4. Attach Your String Lights

Once your wires are installed, you can hang your string lights. It is simple to use zip ties or cable ties that are the same color as the string light to attach your string lights to the cable guidewire. For maximum support, use a zip tie on both sides of the lamp socket.

string lights

Do You Need a Guide Wire to Hang String Lights?

If you span an accessible area, then you may need a guide wire to support your outdoor string lights, yet there are ways to do this where you use other items as support.

If you’re wondering how to hang string lights in a backyard without trees, consider using your deck rails.

  1. Measure the length of your string lights to ensure that they run the full length of the deck railings. If you like, you can light the visible length, and leave the sides open.
  2. Before installing string lights, double-check they are connected to an extension cord or are close to an electrical outlet.
  3. Use a staple gun to secure your lights beneath the railing. Start with the string light closest to your power supply. Using this method, you will keep the staples out of sight while holding string lights securely in place. Ensure the staples don’t cut through the wire of your string lights.
  4. Repeat by placing staples near each of the bulbs for support and make sure the string of lights remains taut.
  5. Check your lights work once you have installed the bulbs.

There are other ways to hang string lights in a yard that doesn’t have any trees or require the use of a guidewire. Simply attach them to the exterior of your house where it is made from materials like stucco or wood.

You follow the same steps as if hanging lights in trees, yet the difference is you need wall anchors specifically made for each material.

You may need to use over one method if you string the lights above your head on a covered deck or patio.

String lights you have permanently installed are ready for use whenever you want. Rather than using a drill, you can use any of these methods to tidy your backyard or outdoor space. (Find the Best Drill Press)

You can hang string lights in or on shrubs. You can use your string lights to illuminate paths or walks. To hold lights in position, use weatherproof tape or you can use cable ties to hold them against smaller objects.

For smaller lightweight string lights, you can find painter’s tape is enough to secure these to the underside of railings. Or hang your outdoor along the fence, arbor, or trellis around a covered patio.

If you want to hang your lights where there is no support, you can easily make these. Insert 8-foot long, pressure-treated posts in half barrels or large planters. You can even do the same using PVC pipe or metal poles.

  1. The containers must be large to hang outdoor string lights in your backyard as they need to withstand wind and weather and the weight of the cables.
  2. To start, screw cup hooks into the side of the post a few inches from the top if using timber. Before filling your containers, decide the places you want to hang the lights.
  3. As you fill the planters with concrete, you need to ensure the post is vertical in the center. Leave space on the concrete in your planters around the pole for a layer of gravel for drainage, and to add potting soil and plants. Before you string the lights or add the plants, ensure the concrete is dry.

To add your lights along the poles, hang them across the top of the cup hooks and secure them in place with cable ties. To connect to the power source, use an outdoor extension cord unless your outdoor lights are battery-powered.

How To Hang String Lights In Backyard Without Trees (2)

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