How To Add Garden Lights (14 Alternatives)

I love the light that comes from a garden. It adds so much to any space, and can bring you joy in even the darkest times. 

To me, nothing says “I’m home” like stepping out into your backyard at dusk and seeing your flowers bathed in soft golden light. 

And if you’re looking for ways to add some extra illumination to your outdoor space (and save money), here are ten of my favorite options:

How to Install Landscape Lighting
Key Takeaways from “How to Add Garden Lights: 14 Alternatives”
Different types of garden lights can be used to enhance the outdoor space.
Since garden lights come in different hues, colors, and shades, they can add a lovely ambiance to your garden at night.
You can choose from different power sources, such as solar-powered, battery-powered, and wired garden lights.
Garden lighting can increase home value, keeping you safer and creating magical outdoor spaces.
When choosing garden lights, consider the function, energy consumption, and safety features before making a purchase.

String Lights

Try stringing lights around your deck or patio. Start by running the wire through a piece of PVC pipe, and then attach the end to an eyehook. Use zip ties to fasten the wires in place and make sure you don’t get too close to any plants. 

Hit one of those with your string and you’ll be up all night trying to fix it! Once you’ve got everything secured, hang them from beams or tree branches for a romantic atmosphere that will make guests feel like they’re in love if not for themselves then for their significant others.

For more illumination, add more strands (if there are no obstacles) until it looks like Christmas morning every night!

If you’re looking for something more modern than twinkle lights though try using rope lighting instead; this flexible option allows greater control over where light will shine while still creating an attractive glow throughout your yard or garden area.”

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Flaming Torches

There are a number of ways to set up a fire pit in your backyard. You can use a propane torch, natural gas torch, wood burning torch, charcoal torch or solar powered torch. Another option is an electric or battery powered garden light that has an on/off switch and flame effect.

For safety reasons when using any type of garden lights you should take some precautions such as wearing protective gear like gloves and eye protection when lighting the fire. 

If someone will be near the area where you are lighting the fire then make sure they know about your plan so that they can watch out for any dangers from sparks flying away from the flame source.

Flaming Torches Table

Type of TorchDescription
Propane TorchThis type of torch uses propane gas to create a real flame effect. Easy to set up and requires minimal maintenance.
Natural Gas TorchUses natural gas as the source of fuel which is cost-effective, efficient and safe.
Wood Burning TorchProvides an authentic campfire feel with crackling sounds and real wood burning. Needs regular cleaning and proper ventilation.
Charcoal TorchUses charcoal to light up a flame. Considered an eco-friendly option for fire pits while adding flavor to your barbecue dishes.
Solar Powered TorchThis option uses rechargeable batteries powered by solar energy, providing a glowing ambiance for several hours.
Electric/Battery Powered Garden Light TorchProvides flame-like effects without any real flame, powered by electricity or battery. Easy to switch on and off and requires minimal maintenance.

The above table shows various types of flaming torches you can use to set up a fire pit in your backyard. Each torch comes with unique features that can enhance your outdoor experience.

Solar Lanterns

Solar lanterns are portable, safe and environmentally friendly. They’re also easy to use—all you need to do is charge them in the sun during the day and they will give off light at night.

 In addition to being a great alternative to candles or flashlights, solar lanterns can be used for camping, power outages or just as decoration. They’re inexpensive too!

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Tiki Torches

Tiki torches are a great way to add light to your garden. They’re easy to use and cheap to buy, and they can be used in a variety of ways. 

You can also buy them in a variety of shapes and sizes. This makes them ideal for lighting up your garden at night, or for adding some ambience when you have guests over during the day.

Hanging Mason Jars

You can find mason jars everywhere, from the kitchen to the craft store. You can use them for everything from decorating your home to storing dry goods in them (and they’re perfect for drinking out of, obviously).

 If you’re looking to add garden lights that look fancy but aren’t too expensive or time-consuming, then mason jar lights are a great choice.

How do I make my own mason jar lights?

First, gather all your supplies:

  • Mason Jars (The bigger ones will give off more light)
  • Wire hangers or strong string/rope/cord/etc. (at least one piece per jar)
  • Screwdriver (optional; needed if using string or rope)
  • Light bulbs (the type of bulb depends on what color light you want; see below)

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Candle Jars

Candles are a great way to add light to your garden. They’re easy to set up and add a unique, homemade touch. You can use any sort of glass jar with a lid a mason jar or an empty jam jar will do the trick!

The best part about using candles is that they don’t need electricity, so if you don’t have any power nearby, they’re still an option. To make these jars into lights:

Take tea lights and put them in each of your jars/jars (we recommend having at least 2 or 3). You can buy tea lights or make them yourself by boiling some wax in water and then coloring it red with food coloring powder.

Put a wick into each jar/jar (we recommend using wicks from cotton balls). You can cut off the top half inch of each cotton ball stick and trim down the bottom half inch so it fits better into the jar.

Fill up each candle with water until just below where the wick starts sticking out from inside . This keeps everything nice and stable when lit…

Candle Jar Table

Type of JarDescription
Mason JarA classic choice for candle jars. Features a sturdy build, with a large and transparent glass surface to let the candlelight shine through.
Apothecary JarThese jars feature a vintage design with a narrow neck, wide base, and are often clear glass. When used as candle jars, they provide a soft, warm glow.
Votive Candle HolderA small, usually circular or square-shaped candle holder specifically designed to hold votive candles. Comes in a variety of materials like glass, wood, and metal.
Tea Light Candle HolderUsually made of metal or glass, these are perfect for holding tea lights. They come in a variety of designs and sizes, and some models feature intricate designs or cutouts that scatter the candlelight, creating lovely patterns.
Recycled Glass Jar or BottleA great eco-friendly option made using recycled materials. They tend to come in various sizes and shapes giving a rustic aesthetic to the space.
Painted Glass JarIt’s possible to turn old jars, bottles, or vases into candle holders. All it takes is some paint to revamp their look according to outdoor decor theme.

The above table shows types of glass jars used as candle holders that can add a charming touch and illuminate outdoor spaces. Each jar type has unique features allowing for customization to fit your garden’s design.

Paper Bag Luminaries

Paper bag luminaries are a lovely and simple way to add some festive light to your garden. Fill a paper bag half-way with sand or rice and place a tea light inside. 

Tie the top of the bag closed with ribbon, then poke holes in each corner for drainage. Place these in your garden or on your porch for an easy addition that will last through all four seasons!

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Battery-Powered Candles

One of the most popular ways to add light to your garden is with battery-powered candles. These are safer than real candles and are much more environmentally friendly, as they do not require any flame or combustion. 

Battery-powered candles can be used indoors or outdoors on a table, mantelpiece or windowsill as well as in your garden.

Fruit-Shaped Solar Lanterns

Fruit-shaped solar lanterns are a great way to add a little bit of light to your garden. They are easy to find and inexpensive, but they aren’t the only option for adding lighting.

You can find them in most garden stores and online, including Amazon, where there are plenty of different styles and colors. I bought a few that look like lemons for my herb garden last summer and they worked well!

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Wine Bottles With Votive Candle Holders

This idea is great for outdoor lighting, as well. Just use wine bottles with a wide mouth, place votive candle holders inside and then place the bottles in a glass vase. Then add some flowers to bring the whole thing together!

Solar Path Lights

If you’re looking for a more low-maintenance lighting solution, solar path lights are the way to go. They are powered by batteries that charge during the day and shine at night.

To choose your solar path lights, start by considering where and how often you’ll use them. Then match up their features with what you need in terms of brightness and durability. For example: Do you want something with adjustable brightness? Do they need to be weatherproof? Is appearance important too?

Led Copper Wire String Lights

LED copper wire string lights are more durable, safer, and efficient than standard string lights. They’re also better for the environment because they don’t use as much energy and don’t contain a lot of mercury (mercury is a poisonous substance).

When you look at LED copper wire string lights compared to other types of lighting, you might notice something odd about them: instead of having one cord connected to each bulb individually, they have one long cord that connects all the bulbs together in one big loop. This means that you won’t have any loose strands or loose connections anywhere in your garden!

Tea Lights And Vases

Tea lights and vases. You can find a variety of glass votive candle holders, from the simple to the ornate. Use them in your garden by placing them on a pedestal or tabletop. 

If you have borrowed a beautiful piece of glassware for the table setting inside, use it outside as well! Glass vases and glass jars can be used as candle holders too.

Glass bowls. Bowls come in all shapes and sizes; you can use any size that fits your needs. If you want to add some sparkle to your garden light display, try placing LED lights inside glass bowls filled with water or sand at nightfall so they reflect their radiance through the material just like real candles do! Your guests will be amazed at how well this trick works!

Glow Sticks In Balloons

If you want to add a little extra glow to your garden lights, place a water balloon filled with glow sticks on top of them. This will provide an additional layer of light and create a cool effect. Also try placing glow sticks in glass jars or paper bags.


We hope you enjoyed this guide to adding garden lights to your backyard. As you can see, there are many options to choose from and each one has its own unique look and feel. 

Some of them may be more expensive than others but that doesn’t mean they don’t have their place in your garden or on your patio! 

We hope you found this information helpful as well as entertaining we know we had fun writing it! Happy planning!

Further reading:

Discover creative inspiration with these garden lighting ideas from The Spruce.

Get inspired by these garden lighting ideas from Gardening Etc. to create a magical outdoor space of your own.

If you’re looking for a comprehensive guide to low-voltage outdoor lighting, check out this article from The Family Handyman: Low-Voltage Outdoor Lighting.


Can garden lighting be installed DIY?

Yes, garden lighting can certainly be installed DIY. If you are confident in your wiring and electrical abilities, you can install garden lighting without calling in a professional.

What types of garden lights are there?

There are various garden light types, including in-ground lights, pathway lights, spotlights, string lights and more.

What are some benefits of garden lighting?

Garden lighting can increase home value, provide safety by illuminating walkways and add a magical ambiance to outdoor spaces.

Can solar-powered lights be as effective as wired garden lights?

Yes, advances in solar technology have made solar-powered garden lights a great, low-maintenance alternative to wired garden lights. As long as they get enough sunlight during the day, they can be just as effective.

What should I consider when choosing garden lighting?

When choosing garden lighting, consider the purpose of the lights, the amount of light needed, their energy consumption, and the safety factors. It is best to choose lights that are waterproof and specified for outdoor use.