There is no exact calculation to determine how many lights are required to light outdoor trees. Slender and deciduous trees will require the least amount of lights for desired affect. Evergreen trees including Spruce, Pines and Firs that retain most of their foliage in the winter may require up to 25% more lights than the recommended count.
String length is a consideration when calculating how many lights are needed. 100 light count strings can come with various spacing between bulbs, resulting in string lengths that can differ by 15' or more.
Indoor Christmas trees: Light counts are standard with the chart below, following the rule of thumb for 100 lights per vertical foot
Most popular: 4" bulb spacing to allow for maximum lighting with minimal wire
If wrapping branches: 6" or 8" spacing is recommended to allow space for wire to wrap tightly around each branch
Evergreen trees are thick, needing additional string length to ensure complete coverage. 6" bulb spacing is ideal. Consider using C7 and C9 bulbs.
Deciduous trees shed leaves, requiring fewer lights if simply draping and more if wrapping trunks and branches. 8" spacing is ideal.
Bushes and hedges - light counts remain standard, however many people choose to use net lights for quick and even coverage. When using light strings, choose random light patterns as opposed to uniform for best effect.
The type of light string chosen makes a difference in light count. The most popular bulb sizes for trees are mini lights, 5mm wide angle LED bulbs, and C7 bulbs.
Mini lights: the most popular bulb in Christmas tree lights for indoor and outdoor use
Standard grade - 210 watts can be connected, (typically 600 bulbs)
Premium grade - 210 watts can be connected (typically 600 bulbs), includes lamp lock to ensure bulb stays secure in the socket
Commercial grade - 420 watts can be connected (typically 1,000 bulbs)
5mm LED lights: the preferred LED bulb size for indoor Christmas trees. Less bulbs are required per foot since the light in a wide angle LED light is much brighter than an incandescent mini light. Over 3,000 5mm LED bulbs can be connected together - approximately 48 sets of lights.
C7 bulbs: a popular bulb size due to its retro appearance. Larger in size and light output, far less C7 bulbs are required for tree lighting than mini lights
C9 bulbs: intended for large and overly dense or tall outdoor trees
C6 Green Strawberry Lights Wrapped in Trees
Light Calculations for Power
Every Christmas lighting project requires light calculations for power. Lights will burn brighter and last longer when the proper calculations are used to determine how many lights can be plugged together. The UL standard for how many lights can be connected has recently changed, allowing for up to 210 watts to be plugged together on a standard 22 gauge wire, and 410 watts on a commercial grade 20 gauge wire. C7 bulbs vary greatly depending in wire gauge used, which can be as thick as 18 gauge, allowing for up to 100 C7 bulbs to be connected.
Lights on Outdoor Trees
To best determine how many Christmas lights you need, we recommend lighting counts based on:
Houston Neighborhoods, Southampton, Southside Place, West University, Museum District, Avondale, Memorial Park, Rice Military, Heights, Timbergrove, Montrose, Upper Kirby, River Oaks, Braes Heights, Linkwood, Highland Village , Afton Oaks, Royden Oaks, Weslayan Plaza, Blvd Oaks, Broadacres, Southgate, Braeswood, Memorial, Tanglewood, Galleria, Briargrove, Westhaven, Woodlake, Briarmeadow, Energy Corridor, Fleetwood, Bay Oaks, Bellaire, Meyerland, Maplewood, Sugar Land, Spring Valley, Hedwig Village, Hunters Creek Village, Piney Point Village, The Villages, New Territory, First Colony, Sweetwater, Greatwood, Katy, Cinco Ranch, Kemah, League City, Clear Lake, Nassau Bay, Seabrook, Pearland, 77004, BAILEY ED, 77005, SOUTHSIDE PLACE, WEST UNIVERSITY PLACE, SUNSET TERRACE, PEMBERTON, 77007, ARLINGTON TERRACE, GLEN COVE, TAYLOR DALE, CRESTWOOD, 77016, CRANFORD PLACE, 77019, AVALON PLACE, RIVER OAKS, RIVER OAKS COUNTRY CLUB, 77024, SHERWOOD FOREST, STABLEWOOD, MEMORIAL DRIVE MANOR, HEDWING, WILLOWICK, BAYOU WOODS, LONGWOODS, HUNTERWOOD, HUNTERS GROVE, TYNEWOOD, SANDALWOOD, TARA OAKS, LAKEVIEW, MEMORIAL TIMBERS, CREEKSIDE MANOR, PINE WOOD ESTATES, 77027, ROYDEN OAKS, OAK ESTATES, 77042, RIVERCREST, 77056, BAYOU GLEN (HOUSTON), PINE SHADOWS, WEST OAKS, TANGLEWOOD, TANGLELANE, BROAD OAKS, 77057, INDIAN TRAIL, 77063, PINEY POINT ESTATES, RIVERBEND, 77346, KINGS LAKE ESTATES, 77380, WOODLANDS - Lake Woodlands East Shore, 77382, WOODLANDS - Village Of Carlton Woods, 77401, BRAEBURN CC ESTATES, POST OAK PLAZA, 77459, WATERS COVE AT RIVERSTONE, 77479, AVALON, ENCLAVE AT WATERS OF AVALON
San Antonio Service Area - Northridge Park, Northwest San Antonio, Canyon Springs, Timberwood Park, Stone Oak