Different Types of Landscape Lighting
Transform your landscape into a bold, illuminated showcase. Many options are available, including highlighting a water feature, increasing safety on the pathway, or adding curb appeal.
Landscape Lighting Orlando can create a shadowing effect on walls and other features. This technique highlights a textured surface and is great for depicting statues or garden ornaments.
Uplighting is a type of landscape lighting that shines light upward to illuminate features and create dimension in the nighttime. It can be used in a variety of ways to give different effects, from crisp and modern to naturally dramatic. The beauty of this technique is that it highlights the shape and texture of a feature rather than just its brightness. For example, a well-placed spotlight on the base of a tree can highlight its branches and leaves with an elegant silhouette.
Up lighting can also be used to draw attention to a hardscape such as a patio, walkway or driveway. A well-placed spotlight or in-ground “well” light can be a subtle way to add nighttime warmth and safety to your property’s hardscape. This is a popular choice for homeowners who want to highlight their home’s unique architecture while enhancing safety and adding curb appeal.
Unlike the bright, glaring lights of the past, today’s low-voltage LED landscape lighting uses only a fraction of the energy that older incandescent lighting did. It is still tempting to go overboard with landscape lighting, but you will find that it actually looks best when a few lights are used sparingly. Too many lights will wash out the features of your yard and can be overwhelming for your neighbors as they squint to avoid the blinding glare.
A good landscape lighting company will know how to use uplighting in a variety of ways to bring out the best in your yard’s standout features. The lacy leaf structure of a Japanese maple, the cool multiple trunks of your Pygmy date palm and even the intricate details of a 6-foot tall croton can all look amazing with the right lighting.
A landscape lighting design can highlight the beauty of your home’s exterior features, accentuate garden areas, and add drama to trees and other structures. But it’s not just about ambiance and visibility; safety is also an important factor. Using different types of landscape lights can improve both aspects at night, while balancing beauty and function.
Downlights, which are placed on the ground to shine upward, can highlight elements of a home’s exterior, such as a column or pergola. They can also be installed under benches, in seating, or in a gazebo. When paired with a tree, downlighting can mimic moonlight and enhance the shadow play of the branches and leaves on the ground.
The fourth type of landscape light, well lights (also known as in-ground lights), are in-grade fixtures that illuminate a focal point or other elements on the landscape level below it. They’re a popular choice for illuminating garden beds, highlighting sculptures and art pieces, flag poles, walls, columns, swimming pools, and gazebos.
Path lights are a common and practical option for illuminating walkways. They’re typically placed along pathways and patios to guide homeowners and guests. But, like downlights, they can also be positioned within garden beds to show off colorful plantings at night.
Moonlights and pathway lights can both help people safely navigate your property at night. But, as mentioned above, it’s best to layer the two types of landscape lights for a complete and balanced landscape lighting design. For example, if you have a tree with beautiful branches near a brick pathway, use downlights to moonlight the tree’s branches and add path lights to light the way for your family and friends down the stairs without creating an overly-lit scene.
Accent lighting is a great way to show off your home and landscape after dark. It creates drama and intrigue by illuminating specific areas of your property, drawing attention to unique features like trees, statues, or fountains. It can also add a layer of safety to your outdoor space, guiding visitors and preventing trips and falls.
Pathway lights are the most common type of accent lighting, and a great choice for highlighting walkways or garden trails. These lights illuminate your path and make it safer for guests to use at night, making them a practical addition to any outdoor living space. They come in a wide range of styles, from simple and understated to ornate and decorative. Depending on your style, you can choose from a variety of finishes and colors that complement your landscape and your home.
Another type of accent light is the wall/earthlight, which is placed at ground level to cast a soft glow on the area underneath it. This technique is perfect for showcasing tall bushes or trees without overwhelming the surrounding area with light. This technique is also ideal for highlighting the base of any wall, stone or boulder structure in your landscape.
For a more dramatic effect, highlight an area with multiple lights instead of just one. By aiming more than one light at a particular area, you can create a striking silhouette of the feature you’re showcasing and reduce harsh shadows that could distract from your landscape. The most important thing to remember when designing your accent lighting is that every yard is different, so you should always choose a design that reflects your unique style. There are no templates to follow when it comes to landscape lighting, so be sure to experiment with your design until you find a look that speaks to you.
Path lights illuminate garden pathways, walkways around driveways and patio areas, and even flower beds. Unlike most lights, which are taller and more visible, these fixtures stay low to the ground and have canopies to hide bulbs. You can choose from a range of options, including solar or low-voltage fixtures, which typically cost between $200 and $700 for a standard-size path.
Path lighting is usually one of the first types of landscape lighting a homeowner installs. This is because these fixtures are relatively easy to set up: You can go to the local hardware store, grab a few sets of self-contained, self-powered fixtures, and pound them into the ground. However, there are a few key points to consider when installing these fixtures.
For instance, a line of path lights that runs up and down the length of a walkway can look overly contrived and forced. Instead, try staggered layouts that allow the lights to highlight the landscaping features along the pathway. You should also keep in mind that, as you place these fixtures, they should complement ambient light sources such as streetlights, sky glow (from artificial lights reflecting off the clouds and mist), moonlight, and natural sunlight.
It is important to remember that the purpose of path lighting is not only to guide guests, but to enhance your landscape design and create a sense of ambiance and intrigue at night. Choosing the right fixtures for your Memphis property will allow you to achieve both goals. Ideally, you should discuss your landscape lighting needs with an outdoor lighting professional so that you can receive advice on the best fixtures to use and the ideal placements for them.
In the landscape lighting world, “floodlights” are luminaires that flood an area with light, much like a flood would overflow a riverbank. These luminaires typically have a wide beam angle and are best for illuminating large areas. They can be used to “wash” walls and hedges with light, for instance, or can be used to illuminate an entire outdoor entertainment space for a more ambient effect.
In general, a flood light should be considerably dimmer than other lighting options. This is because you don’t want your landscape to look as if it is daytime, but rather that you are enjoying the natural beauty of your home at night.
While floodlights can be effective in many applications, they are often criticized for overly illuminating an area and failing to highlight any particular elements. For this reason, they are rarely recommended in a professional landscape lighting design.
For a more artistic lighting option, consider using spotlights instead. Spotlights are able to brighten smaller pools of light, and they are best for highlighting specific features or objects in your landscaping. These lights are available in a variety of lumen outputs, with higher levels producing more brightness.