The Basics of Landscape Lighting

Lighting is not a one size fits all deal; just because certain lights look good on your neighbor’s property does not mean that they will look good in your yard as well. Your home and yard have unique features that sets your property apart from the rest of the street. Knowing the some of the different options available will help you choose the perfect design to illuminate your property.

Path Lighting: This is used to create a soft glow to illuminate pathways and to improve safety and visibility. Mushroom lights, tulip lights, lanterns, and tier lights are best suited for this purpose.

Moon Lighting: This popular technique imitates the appearance of the full moon. To achieve this effect, fixtures are mounted on the trunks and branches of tall trees, with a soft glow filtering through the leaves to illuminate the yard below. Flood lights, spot lights, and well lights are best suited to this method.

Deck Lighting: This technique is also used to highlight walkways, as well as steps, patios, and decks. They are usually installed as surface fixtures on vertical posts or beneath railings. Spot and accent lights are perfect for deck lighting.

Shadow lighting: As the name suggests, this method is intended to create dramatic shadows, usually to emphasize a unique element such as a statue. Well, flood, and accent lights create the best shadow effects.

Spread lighting: Spread lights are used for this technique to create a circular pattern. This method is well suited to gardens and underwater elements.

Downlighting: Also known as spotlighting, this effect is achieved by mounting fixtures on high structures to illuminate large areas. Flood, spot, and accent lights are well suited to this technique due to their intensity.

Uplighting: This method is used to add a sense of dimension to large objects, highlighting stationary objects such as trees, statues, and even buildings. Spot lights, flood lights, accent lights, and well lights are commonly used for this purpose.

Wall lighting: This creates a dramatic effect against wall surfaces, especially textured ones. Wall wash lights, spot lights, and accent lights will create the best washing effect.

Although familiarity with the different options will help you decide how to illuminate you yard, it would be a good idea to consult a professional to help you figure out the best way to position and layer your lights. With expertly designed and installed landscape lighting, your home will look impressive day or night.

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