Accentuate the design of any project by adding some light. Outdoor lighting is, of course, a great safety precaution. It’s also a way to spotlight and extend the use of outdoor living spaces. Use it to draw attention to focal points, from specific plants to stonework to water features.
Take a look at some of the most creative ways to use lighting in your landscape design.
Lighting Trees and Plants
Does your project’s landscape have a few focal trees? If so, there are several different lighting designs to consider. For something that’s quaint and light, wrap the branches in strings of fairy lights. This outlines the trees and creates a heavenly effect.
You could also go bolder with directional or spot uplights at the base of the trees. This lighting will show off the tree’s size and regality while the light reflects off the leaves. This would be especially charming when the trees are blooming in the spring or during autumn when you can enjoy that brilliant fall foliage.
Another option is to attach tree mount lights to the trunk or the branches. This highlights what is on the ground level like flower beds or a patio.
Lighting these will help you and your visitors get to your door without worry. But don’t think of walkway lights as being just utilitarian. There are so many amazing options to use to bring out the colors and vibrancy of the area around the walkway. From flush lights to garden lights to pillar lights, there are numerous choices depending on your walkway’s material and length.
The main focus for this type of lighting is usually at the foot level so that someone doesn’t miss a step. However, that light also shines on the plants and shrubs nearby, illuminating these features.
Walkway lighting benefits also include:
- Protection of path border plants
- Marking path boundaries
- Enhanced curb appeal
- Ambient lighting for outside entertaining
Lighting Water Features
Water features in landscaping should always have lighting. Whether your water feature is big or small, adding some light will make it look even more magical. You can illuminate water features in three ways:
- Above-surface lighting to reflect off the water to cast rippling patterns of light on the nearby landscape
- Underwater lights which present a softer glow and add interest in places such as a koi pond or other larger water scene
- Recessed lights mounted below a moving water feature like a waterfall or fountain, creating a visual effect that is a mixture of the other two
Lighting Architectural Features of Landscapes
Landscape design often includes many intriguing architectural features, all of which will look even more striking with lighting. Emphasize raised flower beds and their blooms. Cast lighting on outdoor sculptures. Add a bit of light to terracing, too.
There are lots of options for lighting to highlight these areas. Your choice depends mainly on what features are in each area and how your client plans to use the areas. Lighting landscapes is always tied back to how this will impact the experience for the homeowner and their guests.
Consider these ideas:
- In-ground light fixtures to direct a small, precision spotlight on a specific feature
- Hardscape lights, which mount on existing landscaping features like a stone or brick wall
- Level lighting—lights are installed at various levels to capture both high and low features
- Colored lighting—most lighting you’ll ever use will be white, but some clients might enjoy some hues (LED lights can be set up to cycle through different tints)
Lighting Gazebos and Pergolas
Structures like these are often a grand part of a landscape and may have different plants around them, as well as some kind of vines attached to the building. Perfect for getting some shade during the day, these aspects also can be an amazing evening feature.
You could use lamps to outline and define the shape of the gazebo or pergola. You could also use rope lighting, which is a very energy-efficient option that doesn’t emit heat, so it’s just right for draping over wooden structures.
The right lighting really makes your landscape design look unlike any other. It’s a chance to turn a client’s backyard oasis into an enchanting evening scene. If you aren’t equipped to offer landscape lighting, partner with a local company that focuses solely on this so your clients are getting the best type of lights that will have a long life.
Lighting is just one more aspect of the ecosystem of landscape design. At LandscapeHub, we aim to help landscape design companies like yours by offering lots of ideas and inspiration in our blog.
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