Hit Or Miss? The Light Tree Combines Solar Street Lighting and Planters

light tree concept image

Image via Yanko Design

This seems like a slightly more Alice In Wonderland, slightly less majestic version of Ross Lovegrove's solar tree-like streetlights, but designer Omar Ivan Huerta Cardoso is giving fake-tree-solar-streetlighting a go with the Light Tree. This one, however, has a few real sprouts incorporated into the design, which is nice - but can that overcome some of the other problematic design flaws?It seems to be a supplement to street lighting, rather than an alternative. And that means this is a whole heck of a lot of material and embodied energy for very little actual help with street lighting. The design also seems complicated - Yanko Design explains: "The artificial tree is covered in solar cells that power ultra-bright LEDs at the base. The light diffuses thru water which fills the entire cavity of the tree for that "glowy" look."

Solar cells are...where? It looks like at the very base of the tree...that's the last place you'd want to put it.

light tree concept image

Why there is water involved, we're not sure. But it also acts as a giant planter, with the "branches" growing actual plants. That takes some of the edge off the artificial feel of the design, but does it make sense? There doesn't seem to be any real way to care for the plants with the way the branches are set up, unless you're growing a philodendron.

This design seems like a miss - but you weigh in: are there redeeming qualities?

More on Solar Street Lighting
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Nightlife Made Sustainable: Street Lights That Match Evening Sensitivities Save Considerable Energy
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