Top Tips For Landscape Lighting

Converting to LED lighting from Halogen lighting

Summer is well and truly here and there’s nothing better than enjoying the balmy weather with friends and family long into the night. The Central Coast, Newcastle and Hunter Regions provide the perfect climate for enjoying the delectable weather of summer in Australia.

 A well lit outdoor space will make this phenomenon all the more magical. 

Whether it’s garden lighting, pathway lighting, or discovering your own creative flair in an obscure corner, taking the time to perfect the lighting in your landscape will give you a sense of satisfaction and warmth like you’d hardly believe possible.

We’ve come up with some tips and ideas on how to make your summer garden of dreams become reality.

Start Subtle

The key with outdoor lights is to plan and avoid the overbearing. You’re not trying to make it daytime – too much light will only serve to diminish the effect you’re aiming for. If you’re really serious about it you can hire a specialist lighting designer, but for most people your local electrical services will be able to give you the right advice on the type of lights to use, and how to use them.

Start slowly, try out an idea and sit with it at night time to see how it feels. It’s surprising how little is needed to create an alluring effect. Here are some of the best.

Path Lighting

This is one of the most simple and satisfying techniques. There’s something about a subtly lit path that captures our human imagination: it’s almost impossible to resist the temptation to walk down a well lit path. 

LED lights are usually the choice here, they are energy efficient but still provide strong enough light. Depending on what your path is surrounded by will depend on how you light it. If you have garden beds or plants alongside your path, then hiding the lights in the plants on either side work beautifully. Otherwise, simply highlighting the path with small LED lights works a treat every time.

Stair Lighting

So, you’ve had a couple of drinks and it’s time to take a quick trip to the toilet. “Up the stairs and to the left,” your host informs you. Ten minutes later you return, baffled, as though you’ve just been on a journey the Hobbit was supposed to take.

Everyone knows that stairs at night time are an accident waiting to happen. It’s amazing how some subtle lighting can transform a safety concern into a magical journey. Step lights not only provide safety for your family and your guests, but like lighting paths, they quickly give a beautiful sense of adventure.

Hide lights behind plants or decorative features and soon you’ll feel as though you’re wandering through a magical hallway at Hogwarts!

Uplighting

This technique works really well on trees, but will work brilliantly on any feature that is tall enough. Think of this technique as a kind of highlighting, drawing attention to a specific feature. With an impressive tree for example, using a spotlight at the base shining upwards will bring out details of the tree you never see in daylight, and will always impress the guests.

Backlighting

Similar to uplighting, this technique is a way of highlighting certain elements of your backyard. Backlighting creates shadow and bold shapes which give your garden a sense of depth. Perfect for the contemporary garden, but will work well anywhere.

Simply place some LED lights, or a spotlight behind a feature (like a sculpture, or a  plant) and watch the shadowy drama unfold!

Water Feature Lighting

If you’re lucky enough to own a pool, you know how spectacular lighting complements water. Water is always morphing in some way, and thus the light’s refractions constantly create stunningly unique and intricate patterns.

If you have a water feature, experiment with your lighting with different angles to create shadow or to illuminate objects. Water lighting creates intrigue and fascination and will quickly become the pièce de résistance of your backyard.

With landscape lighting, it’s always best to contact an electrician if anything feels somewhat dubious or risky, as well as getting the right information on the best lights for what you’re hoping to achieve!