Trees around the world contribute to the magic of the winter holidays by supporting billions of twinkling lights that brighten the dark hours of the long winter nights of the Northern Hemisphere. In many cities, illuminated trees “carry the torch” year-round, casting a cheerful glow and adding character to civic plazas and streets. Lighted trees remind us to look for the bright spots in what can be a challenging time of year.
Celebrate the season – and trees – by visiting a fantastical botanical light show at a public garden or civic display near you. A quick internet search with keywords such as “holiday lights public gardens” will get you started. Or you can peruse the USA Today list of 10 Best Garden Holiday Lights 2023.
Morton Arboretum, one of our favorite public gardens, is among their Reader’s Choice 10 Best. Fabulous in the daylight, we can only imagine how fantastic the arboretum is by night during this special presentation that runs through January 6: Illumination: Tree Lights at The Morton Arboretum. We can thank plant breeders at the Lisle, Illinois, arboretum for their remarkable tree introductions that include Exclamation!® Planetree, Accolade® and Triumph™ Elms, State Street® Maple and other fine shade and ornamental trees.
Longwood Gardens, another favorite arboretum, is located at Kennett Square, Pennsylvania. They’re presenting “A Very Retro Christmas with the help of about a half-million lights!
Closer to home, we enjoy the winter wonder of holiday lights at Zoo Lights, presented by The Oregon Zoo, and The Grotto Christmas Festival of Lights. And we always enjoy the parade of decorated Christmas Ships that cruise the Columbia and Willamette Rivers each year. Wherever you are, enjoy the lights, and enjoy the season! Happy Holidays from all of us at J. Frank Schmidt & Son Co.
No time to visit the holiday light show at a nearby public garden? Take a walk through your own neighborhood and you may find hidden gems like the one shown in our header image. It’s the home landscape of JFS Marketing Director, Jeff Lafrenz in Gresham, Oregon. As the trees get bigger, his light show gets better and brighter!