How To String Lights Across Backyard – Guide For First Time Homeowners

With little planning on the way to string lights, it can turn your dark outdoor backyard into a more exciting look. Out of multiple ways, hanging them across is the most versatile for daily use, outdoor events or parties. For anyone who is looking to get started, here is how to string lights across the backyard.

Tools And Supplies Needed

  • String lights
  • Tape measure & painters tape
  • Screw-in hooks and eyes
  • Extension cords
  • Zip ties

In this instruction, I’m going to categorize it into two. Each method will require some more supplies.

For backyards without tall supports or trees:

  • 10-foot metal poles or wooden posts
  • 18”-long metal rebar stakes
  • Weighted buckets filled with concrete/Sturdy planters and a PVC pipe slot in the center
  • Cable ties
  • Screws or nails
  • Hammer

For a large expanse:

  • Wire cutters
  • String light suspension kit

How To String Lights Across Backyard

With Trees Or Other Tall Supports

Step 1: If you’re a careful person or the project is for a large outdoor area, draw a rough sketch with detail measurements.

draw a rough sketch

Beforehand, scout your backyard and determine the suitable positions where you can nail metal poles or wooden posts on. You should go for sturdy places or natural supports to ensure the posts or poles will stay firmly to the ground even under harsh conditions.

Identify your preference later – Do you like square or rectangle string light system?

Besides, don’t forget to find a suitable power source.

If you want to opt for the most economical lighting system in the long run, solar string lights are worth considering. They are easy to install, lightweight, lower-maintenance, eco-friendly, and don’t cost as much of your electricity bill as other types.

Need help with this: Find suitable outdoor solar landscape lights.

Step 2: Find the needed length of string lights

Find the needed length of string lights

This step should be carried out before buying string lights. After marking all positions that you’re going to lay down posts, run a tape measure along with the distances (including any crisscrosses or zig-zags for the configurations).

Then, purchase the right length of string lights accordingly.

Step 3: Set up the metal poles/wooden posts or use a string light suspension kit

Set up wooden posts

As the metal poles are 10 feet of length, it should be posted at least 1-foot-deep into the ground.

Next, there are two common ways to mount string lights: Either attaching a sturdy wire or not. This is particularly helpful if you want the strand to maintain tension or hanging string lights over a large area.

Hang with a wire:

This is when the string light suspension kit comes into place as it includes lock lamps, turnbuckles, pad eyes, snap hooks, and a cable wire. The way to set them up depends on your initial sketch.

Hang without a wire:

Screw a hook into the fence, wall, tree trunk, pergola or the top end of your posts to utilize as mounting. Drill a hole before putting the screws in.

Step 4: Hang the string lights

Hang the string lights

Directly plug the lights into an extension cord or external outlet and place the first light next to the mounting hardware. Once it’s ready fixed, unplug and start stringing other bulbs. On each hook, try to wrap it several times for more sturdiness.

If your string lights are the commercial-grade design, they will have built-in clips on the top of the light socket for easier hanging, especially with a mounting wire.

Use electricity staples to keep the extension cord tight and firm down a post or against your house’s walls. This is optional! After things are done, check if this new lighting system works well.

Without Trees

The most common solution when your backyard doesn’t have any tall supports is making your own ones to put posts. The drawback of this method is the risks of buckets tipping over due to their weighted heft but you can totally solve this by leveraging the perimeter of the post (up to 2x2 or larger).

The rest of this process is similar to the previous method.


See? String lights across the backyard is really an easy project while making it much more lively and glow. There just comes with some planning beforehand and right tools as well as supplies. It’s your turns now! Have fun!

I am Vera Watson. Drawing The House is a dream that was conceived when I saw a niche in consumer guide on almost everything in our homes. My main aim is to help you save money by testing the products you need and recommending you the best of them all. I believe in the family as an institution and the first way to make a family happy is providing the best for them.

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