Landscape Lighting for Beauty, Safety and Security


Landscape lighting illuminates your home, creates a welcoming entrance, and provides safety and security. It highlights paths, flower beds, trees, and other landscape features.

While you can get some lighting fixtures at the garden center or big box store, a professional has many more options to achieve your desired look. Read to learn more.

Uplighting is one of the most common techniques in landscape lighting. It involves installing lighting fixtures at ground level and pointing them upward toward special features in your yard, such as a gorgeous tree with interesting branches or a stone wall that curves along the natural slope of your property. It can also draw attention to a beautiful fountain, garden statue, or other decorative element. It’s a great way to highlight something that adds beauty or function to your home at night.

The idea behind uplighting is to create a contrast between light and shadows to make the feature stand out in the darkness. A landscape lighting professional can help you choose the best fixture locations to maximize these effects.

Another common landscape lighting technique is downlighting, which uses fixtures to light things below ground level. These can be things like pathways, walkways, and sitting areas. It’s important to remember that these techniques should work together to illuminate the entire landscape, not compete with it. Layering these two types of lighting will often result in the most natural-looking results.

Downlighting is a great way to accentuate a special tree or architectural feature at night without competing with the surrounding landscape. Lighting a tree from below shows off its unique branch structure and creates a stunning effect that draws attention when the sun goes down. It’s a great way to show off an impressive, mature tree and make guests safe to enjoy in the dark.

This technique also works well for certain shrubs with intriguing structural shapes. Lighting them from below gives them a “hologram” effect that is fascinating in the darkness and again allows you to hide the light fixture for an even more natural look.

Spotlights are an important part of the landscape lighting design process when it comes to highlighting the features of your property. They have narrower beams than floodlights and can be used to create visual accents on landscaping or architectural elements that you want to stand out at night. They also bring light to hardscape and softscape features that don’t lend themselves to being highlighted with uplighting techniques such as silhouetting, shadowing, moonlighting, and cross-lighting.

For instance, we often use spotlights to highlight the edges of a wall or other hardscape features on a patio or deck. That can add depth and dimension to these structures at night and make them stand out without using the more direct uplighting technique that creates bold shadows contrasting with bright light. Another way to use spotlights is to illuminate a non-uniformly shaped tree or shrub, such as a boxwood hedge, where the lighting will add visual interest and give it more presence at night.

Spotlights can be hidden within the foliage of some shrubs to shine light upward, illuminating not just the shrub but the trees and houses above it. That is a great trick to use when you want the lights to be less obvious, and it can be especially effective on small bushes that are hard to see from a distance.

Another common landscape lighting technique is to use a flood light to wash the wall of an entertainment area with light. That can make the space feel larger, and it’s a good option for outdoor dining areas, pool decks, or other rooms where you want to create a sense of openness.

The beauty of a well-planned, professionally installed landscape lighting system is that it can transform how you use your yard at night. It’s a cost-effective and attractive way to create a welcoming space for guests at night, and it can also add security and safety by making your home and property easier to navigate at night. We would be happy to assist if you want to add landscape lighting to your property!

If you’re looking to highlight the features of your home, accentuate a stone walkway, or add a little intrigue to an outdoor kitchen or deck, you need more than just a standard garden light from your local hardware store. That’s where the landscape lighting professionals come in. Professionals can show you the options to create a stunning look while minimizing your energy costs and minimizing maintenance requirements.

The difference between spotlights and floodlights is the “throw” of the beam. Spotlights have a narrower beam angle and are perfect for highlighting the details of hardscape or softscape elements. In comparison, flood lights have a wider beam angle and are better for illuminating large areas of your property. The throw of the light is also affected by the distance between the fixture and the source of the morning. A higher space means the light will be brighter, while a lower distance means less optimistic.

Many of the same techniques used in spot lighting can be utilized with flood lights, although a few differences exist. For example, up-lighting will create bold shadows contrasting with the bright light, down-lighting will illuminate a more gentle, “moonlit” effect, and cross-lighting will draw attention to both sides of a particular feature.

With the right technique, your home can look like a movie set at night. The key is to think of your lighting as an artistic expression rather than just a way to illuminate walkways or prevent break-ins. A skilled landscape lighting professional can help you find the right balance of beauty and function to make your house the talk of the neighborhood.

In addition to the effects discussed above, your landscape lighting can draw attention to a beautiful tree or plant, highlight a stone bench or fountain, add depth and dimension to stucco or brick, and even accent a flagpole. For the calming effects of water scenes, placing fixtures high in trees will catch the details of leaves and branches and create a natural moonlight effect. Finally, a well-lit entryway will welcome guests while reducing the risk of injury on stairs or uneven surfaces.

You’ve spent time and money to build a beautiful outdoor living area. You’ve incorporated the right amount of foliage, shrubbery, water features, and hardscapes to create a space you are proud to show off to your friends and family. After the sun sets, it’s time to illuminate your hardscapes for added beauty, safety, and functionality.

Adding lighting to hardscape areas like patios, walkways, retaining walls, decks, stairs, and driveways adds a whole new dimension to your outdoor living spaces. Light can illuminate the details of a stone wall, wash light down stone walls, or accent the surface of a paver patio. Depending on the style of lighting you choose, it can also be used to highlight other hardscape features such as water elements, freestanding fountains, and other decorative features.

When planning a hardscape project, it is best to work on the placement of lighting before the installation. That will allow you to avoid the headache and expense of retrofitting your lighting later. It’s also easier to route wires during construction than after the fact.

However, if you don’t have the luxury of planning, it is still possible to add hardscape lighting after the construction phase. In this case, it is important to communicate with your contractor about the location of each fixture and how it will be wired. The installer will need to leave room in the paver blocks for the institution and may need to trench around the edges of the patio or walkway to hide the wires.

Hardscape lighting can be a great way to show off a garden statue, accent a fountain, or decorate the yard after dark. They are also fantastic for illuminating steps, enhancing safety, and creating a safe pathway at night. They can even highlight an architectural detail on a home or fence after sunrise. They come in a wide array of color options, run on low voltage, and use LED bulbs that can last a lifetime.

Edith Fillo