What Plants to Grow Under a Security Light

Security lights are common fixtures in many areas, brightening the night with artificial light. Frequently light shines onto properties from a neighboring property or from the street. In such cases, the homeowner does not control the quality, intensity or duration of the light and must adapt to the conditions. In other instances, you will want plants that will reinforce your security efforts.

English Holly

English holly (Ilex aquifolium) is a native to Great Britain, Southern and Central Europe. It grows to heights between 20 and 50 feet and widths of 10 to 20 feet. It grows in full sun. Its leaves are dark-green and glossy with spiny edges. English holly blooms in May with small white flowers and produces red berries in the fall and winter. In addition to its light requirements, it is suitable for use with security lights because its prickly leaves will irritate unsuspecting intruders. The California Invasive Plants Council lists holly as an invasive species in California and along the Pacific Coast. Do not plant English holly where it is invasive. In other areas, reduce the instances of birds spreading holly seeds where you do not want the plant to grow by trimming the plant before birds eat the berries.


Day neutral strawberries are insensitive to the number of daylight hours they receive. According to Purdue University's William R. Chaney, the duration of uninterrupted darkness in a 24-hour cycle governs dormancy, shoot growth and flowering, among other things, in most plants. The strawberries will flower when they reach a specific size and the extra hours of light should not affect their development detrimentally. The University of Maine's Cooperative Extension notes that day neutral strawberries flower throughout the summer months and into the fall. Start with deep, sandy loam soil that is reach in organic matter. Keep the soil moist, but well drained. Grow these plants as annuals because otherwise, your yield will drop dramatically each successive year

Slender Deutzia

Slender deutzia (Deutzia gracilis) is a slow-0growing shrub. It grows to 2 to 4 feet high with an equal width. It produces white flowers for two weeks starting in late May. It has very slender stems. Plant it in well-drained soil. Transplant it with few problems if it does not perform well under the security lights. Since slender deutzia grows slowly, even if the lights cause it to grow faster than it would otherwise grow, it will still not progress at an unmanageable rate. Slow-growing shrubs are also good choices for places where you use security lights because you can make quick assessments about disturbances when you are familiar with the landscape. Low-growing shrubs do not give intruders places to hide or create tall, distracting shadows.

Keywords: security light plants, nighttime lights plants, grow plants lights

About this Author

Lee Roberts has written professionally in different capacities throughout her career. She has written for not-for-profit and commercial entities since she received her B.A in sociology from the University of Michigan in 1986. She has been published on eHow.com. She is currently writing an extensive work of fiction.