Landscape Contractor / Design Build Maintain

APR 2017

LC/DBM provides landscape contractors with Educational, Imaginative and Practical information about their business, their employees, their machines and their projects.

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By Alli Rael, LC/DBM 30 LC DBM Above This home in Miami Beach, Fla., has five historic banyan trees that are more than 100 years old. Tom Crowley of Paradise Landscape Lighting was tasked with their illumination, given the challenge that local ordinance dictates that these historic trees can- not have nails or staples in them. "The city doesn't mind them lit," said Crowley, "but they came and inspected the trees to make sure that nothing was connected to them." W When asked to light historic trees that are protected by local ordinances, such as the 100-year-old banyan trees at this Miami Beach, Fla., home, there are few options available. LC/DBM talked with Tom Crowley, owner of Paradise Landscape Lighting, to discuss the two options: junction boxes strapped to branches, or fixtures mounted on extensions and aimed at the canopy from the ground. Straps Installing a tree-mounted junction box is just like putting a bicycle helmet on a tree branch. Two nylon straps support the junction box where a light is installed, and quick-locking fasteners secure it around the branch. The ny - lon straps should be adjusted to fit tight around the branch or trunk. Once the box is strapped to the tree, a liquid tight connector (provided by the manufactur - er) is secured to the box, and the main supply cable is fed through. The luminaire is installed and secured with screws. Then connections can be made and wires inserted into the box. Turn on the power to the junction box, and make sure it's working properly – and that's all it takes to get the light running. The aesthetics are another facet. "The wire goes down from the box onto the trunk of the tree," said Crowley. "You hide the wires coming down the tree in the least viewed area." He added that the straps come in different lengths, and depending on the situation, he finds it beneficial to trim the excess nylon. Extensions Extensions are Crowley's preferred method for lighting trees such as this, and the primary method he used to light the five banyan trees. T rees H istoric L ighting

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