Need lighting tips for your landscape? What better way to showcase your landscaping accomplishment than by illuminating all the key components of your front and back yards.
You already know your property looks great during the day so why not carry that look into the night?
These lighting tips will not only enhance your curb appeal but will also help in protecting your home from the outside.
Accent lighting is one of many design ideas to consider. It is usually mounted on the ground or recessed into the ground to provide a stunning splash of light on your favorite home, lawn or garden features. Accent lighting is also used for illuminating steps or pathways for safety.
Shed A Little Light on It With These Lighting Tips
Drawing attention through lighting to certain plants or the base of a large tree, a water feature or ground lighting under a backyard deck can make a big difference and even give you an edge over your neighbor’s yard. Nothing adds more to “curb appeal” than bringing your landscape to life at night.
Your options for landscape lighting are broad and varied with many types to choose from that will enhance the beauty of your yard. Here are a couple popular lighting tips – adjustable flood lights can cast a wide spectrum of light over sections of your yard with the dual benefit of beauty and protecting your home.
Illuminate your pathway or either side of your driveway with low level lighting that comes in a wide range of colors, shapes and materials. You can find them made in everything from plastic to copper. Solar options, charged by the sun during the day, provide soft illumination at night and without electricity.
Difference Between Low Voltage and High Voltage Lighting
When choosing landscape lighting you need the right voltages. Here are lighting tips to help you distinguish between the types. Landscape lighting comes in both low and high voltage options. The basic difference between 120 volt (line current) and 12 volt (low voltage) landscape lighting for your yard or garden is that regular voltage systems operate directly on household 120 volt current.
This is generally the same as the connection you would use from any household appliance.
Low voltage landscape lighting, however, uses a transformer which lowers or “steps down” the electrical output to the lights to 12 volts even though that too will run off the line voltage to your home. Energy saving light fixtures are available that can operate efficiently on a lower voltage.
Low voltage lighting, using transformers can be easily installed by a homeowner whereas installing higher voltage lights on a 120 volt system will require the services of a professional electrician.
Lighting Tips for Design Themes
If your landscape design has a specific theme, you can get lights that actually appear to be part of your yard or garden design. For a touch of whimsy, there are also cleverly crafted ceramic creatures such as birds, turtles and frogs which conceal lights inside and will make your garden glow.
Adding appeal, color and a little mystery to your landscape after dark is relatively easy to do. Most residential low-voltage outdoor lighting is simple to install and uses only a small amount of electricity.
Readily available through home and garden stores, big box stores or on the internet, there’s a huge selection to fit any preference, theme or budget.
The Advantages of Landscape Lighting
Not only will the beauty of your landscape continue on past sunset, low-voltage landscape lighting has its benefits:
- Affordable – Low-voltage landscape lighting only consumes about 1/3 of the electricity of its high-voltage counterpart
- Attractive – Highlighting the best features in your landscape or garden lets you enjoy your hard work 24/7
- Practical – Many people don’t get a chance to unwind until after a busy day…enjoy outdoor living into the night with landscape lighting
- Safety – Strategically placing low level lighting around the most traveled areas of your yard make it safer after sunset
- Security – Family members and guests are more secure with a lighted walkway, lighted entrances and illuminated decks and stairs
Here’s a video of lighting tips put together by Lowe’s which answers common questions and visually provides what different types of landscape lighting looks like. You can see not only what their intended function is but where they’re used and how they are generally installed.
Landscape Lighting Tips for Beginners
Remember that the dark sky gives you a blank canvas from which to create an amazing portrait with light. Why not take advantage of it? Here are some tips to get you started:
Get Out Your Flashlight – The best no cost way to determine what you may want is to experiment with your flashlight. Take one outside after sunset and shine it on features of your yard, garden and home that you think would look good night. By using different angles with your flashlight, you will be able to see how subtle changes effect the light spread.
Layer Your Light Levels – You’ll want to distribute different levels of light around your yard. It’s about more than just adding floodlights at the corners of your home. Key objects should be considered for the brighter, high wattage lighting with low level lighting around pathways and decks. Avoid the look of “black holes” by installing lighting in gardens or vertical objects like trees at a level between that of the bright floods and the low level pathway lighting.
Avoid Glare – An indication of the best landscape design is the ability to conceal your source of light. Door lighting, post lighting and security lighting can cause glare that then causes your eyes to dilate. Your eyes will need to re-adjust to shade in order for stairs or curbing to become visible. The brighter the light, the darker the shadow so think about adding glare shields or louvers to reduce any glare as much as possible.
Here Are The Top Rated Lighting Tips in Print
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Tagged with: accent lights • flood lights • garden lighting • ideas for landscaping • landscape and garden lighting • landscape lighting • learn landscape • low voltage lighting • night lighting • pathway lighting
Filed under: DESIGN PLANNING