Tips For Using Specialty Landscape Lighting

Naturally, you know the basics of landscape lighting, such as ensuring your walkways and patio perimeter are well-lit. However, when it comes to decorative landscape lighting, there are many factors to keep in mind. While safety may still be a consideration, you want to think more about the view from inside the house, the yard, and the street. Light your yard with attractive lighting effects that highlight its best points.

Draw Attention to Focal Points

Attractive landscaping should naturally have focal points. This can be a manufactured focal point, such as an elevated statue or a centrally located water fountain. However, a focal point can also be a beautiful tree. Choose one or two focal points, depending on the size of your yard, and draw attention with your landscaping lighting. Uplighting, which is where contractors place low-voltage fixtures at the base of something, can create a subtle spotlight effect. Another suitable effect is shadowing, or placing lights so they cast an interplay of light and shadows over the piece. This is beautiful for a statue or other yard décor.

Create a Sense of Depth

As within your home, landscape lighting should come in layers. Besides definite focal points, plan to illuminate other pretty parts of your yard. For example, grazing is a cross between uplighting and shadowing. With this technique, contractors place a series of spread lights or up-lights at the base of the wall. When turned on, the lights capture the texture of your wall – which is great if you have stone work or other texture in your house's facade. Moonlighting, which is the opposite of uplighting in that the light is placed high in the tree, gives the effect of the moon shimmering through the branches.

Highlight Water Features

Another method for creating depth is by illuminating your water features. If you have a pond or small pool, plan to light it up. As the Landscaping Network points out, you can either surround your pool's perimeter with lights or install underwater lighting. Underwater lighting is especially beautiful when combined with features such as a waterfall or water landscaping. However, the site cautions against using underwater lighting if the moon reflects clearly in the water – this would hold true as well for moonlight landscape lighting.

Try Mood Lighting

As you're planning your layers of light, the goal is to create a mood as well as a sense of depth. You can plan your lighting to create drama in your yard, especially with uplighting and shadowing. However, grazing and moonlighting are more suitable for ambient lighting effects. Experiment with various effects – you can even wire the landscape lighting to different switches. That way you can create whatever mood suits you on a given evening.

To get more information on designing landscape lighting that highlights your house and yard uniquely, talk to local professionals.