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HOA Tips: Do Holiday Lights Hurt Outdoor Trees?

Outdoor trees decorated with holiday lights.

Outdoor holiday decorations are one of the best parts of this time of year. You, your neighbors, and others visiting your neighborhood, including potential future residents, are often treated to creative Christmas, Hanukkah, and New Year’s decorations on and around homes and throughout your neighborhood’s common areas. This often includes trees and other shrubbery decorated with ornaments and holiday lights.

Unfortunately, decorating outdoor trees and shrubbery with holiday lights can be dangerous if it is not done correctly. Homeowners’ Associations (HOAs) should keep this in mind and ensure that they and homeowners in their communities know how to decorate outdoor trees and shrubbery in their communities without causing harm.

Tips for Making Sure Holiday Lights Don’t Hurt Outdoor Trees

If done properly, it should be safe to decorate most outdoor trees and shrubs with holiday lights. The following are a few tips for making sure holiday lights don’t hurt outdoor trees:

  • Use Outdoor Holiday Lights – Never use indoor holiday lights outdoors. Indoor lights are not made to handle the elements, including wet weather and cold temperatures. Outdoor holiday lights are designed to endure the cold and wet conditions that often accompany the holiday season. In addition, indoor lights can harm outdoor trees, including burning them, if they begin to malfunction because of the weather conditions.
  • Weatherproof Extension Cords – Like outdoor holiday lights, other parts of your outdoor holiday decorations should be weatherproof. This includes extension cords and lightboxes. It is especially important that you use weatherproof extension cords and lightboxes because using regular extension cords and lightboxes outdoors can result in electrical problems, including fires, which is obviously bad news for your outdoor trees and shrubs.
  • Check the Condition of Your Lights and Cords – Before you use your outdoor lights, extension cords, and lightboxes, make sure that they are in good condition. Don’t use your outdoor lights or extension cords if their wires are exposed and/or frayed. When that’s the case, they aren’t safe to use, because they pose a fire hazard.
  • Timers – If possible, use timers on your outdoor holiday lights so that they aren’t on all night and day.
  • Don’t Staple – Don’t use a staple gun to decorate your trees with holiday lights. The staples can damage the trees.

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To discuss your situation with our experienced commercial landscaping specialists, give us a call at (800) 741-9150 or contact us online today.

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