How to Add Solar String Lights to the Yard

5 Materials
2 Hours

When we added the fire pit last year, we wanted to add more lighting for both visibility and ambiance. I found these solar string lights on-line and they work so well! They go on when it gets dark and stay on until morning. The only problem we encountered was how to hang them in the garden when there was nothing there to attach them.

Adding solar string lights to the yard will create ambiance and improve visibility. Unless you have strategically placed trees and structures though, there may not be a good space to hang solar lights in the yard. My friend Andrea from @fleur_at_home had a great idea to hang them.

Andrea sent me a link for these Yardguard galvanized metal poles that her and her husband used in their fire pit area. They are relatively inexpensive but need to be cemented into the ground for stability.

Overall this project is pretty inexpensive to do and only took a few hours (minus the drying time for the concrete). Here’s how we did it:

Supply List for Adding Solar String Lights

  • solar string lights
  • galvanized metal poles
  • cement kit
  • aluminum rail end
  • mixing stick for cement (we used whatever we had laying around)
  • post hole digger (if you have one)
  • shovels
  • carabiners
  • ladders
  • bungees
  • level
  • sledgehammer

How to Add Solar String Lights When There is Nothing to Attach it To

We did not have a way to hang solar string lights in the fire pit garden, so we needed to add something to the yard to attach them. While a tree and our house are in the vicinity, we needed another corner or two to get more angles to drape the lights.

I wasn’t sure about cementing poles in the garden, but it looks fine and is not that noticeable. While I don’t love the poles, I do love how the lights turned out so it’s worth the sacrifice.

Step 1: Site the Poles

Use ladders to temporarily set poles.

  • Determine where to site the poles. Where you want to site them will determine how many poles you need.
  • Set up ladders to determine proper spacing

Step 2: Temporarily String Lights

Temporarily string lights to get visual.

  • Temporarily string lights through the ladders for desired placement. Using the ladders allows you to “hang” the lights to get an idea how it will look.

Step 3: Dig Holes

  • Dig holes large enough to set the mix kit in.

Step 4 Rough Up Pole

  • Rough up one end of the pole with a sledgehammer because the concrete will grip better to the metal if it is roughed up.

Step 5: Mix Concrete

  • Follow the cement mix manufacturer’s directions. Mix the concrete and set the pole.

Step 6: Level the Posts

  • When setting the posts be sure to level them.
  • Once level, we bungeed the poles to the ladder to keep them in place.

Step 7: Hang the Lights

  • After the cement dries and hardens, hang the lights. We used carabiners to attach them to the poles.

And that’s it! Although my husband did most of the work, it wasn’t very difficult to do. I wasn’t sure how I felt about the poles before we strung the lights but I LOVE how it looks at night. And now I want to add more…

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Stacy Ling

Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


Have a question about this project?

3 of 5 questions
  • Helene
    on Jul 4, 2020

    Instead of putting posts in ground permanently, could you set them in concrete in 5 gallon buckets? That way they could be moved around the yard!

    • Judy
      7 days ago

      could you paint the pole green or brown to give more natural "look?"

  • Judy Faris
    on Jul 5, 2020

    Are the poles hollow? If they are I'd suggest capping them someway. When I was a kid my brother picked up the corner of a metal swing set and wasps flew out and stung him

  • Rebecca
    7 days ago

    I love this idea! I’m wondering if painted pvc poles could be used to save $. Those galvanized poles are a little pricey!

Join the conversation

2 of 15 comments
  • Kay
    7 days ago

    Nice yard! Love the lights around your seating area. Suggestion for you. Paint your poles. I did something similar but painted the poles and Tee tops chocolate brown. (I did clean the pipe & sand the poles to get any machine oil off. Then painted w/Rustoleum.)

  • C Crow
    7 days ago

    What a beautiful garden you have. Thank you for the ideas!

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