What makes the best landscape lighting? The answer to this question is as varied as the number of landscaping ideas. This form of lighting allows you to highlight and accent the positive features of your landscape. Some homeowners do not even use landscape lights at all. They rely on plants, flowers, shrubs, and a variety of other features instead.
PRO TIP: Before you plan your lighting strategy, make sure that your landscaping and house share some common elements. That way you can eliminate a lot of designing when planning the light. For instance, if your house has a fence, install security lights along with it or around the perimeter. If your landscape is mainly carpeted with different colors of plants, be aware that all of them will need illumination and some of them may need different levels of light.
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So how do you know what type of lights to use and where? One of the best approaches is to consult with an expert who can evaluate your house, yard, and garden and recommend fixtures that match the design. A landscape architect can create a custom plan for you. He or she will analyze your home, take measurements and help you decide what best suits your needs. He or she may even suggest a combination of lights to achieve a certain look or mood. There are landscape designers and electricians that specialize in creating beautiful landscape lighting and solar landscape lights that provide supplemental lighting at night.
If you have existing lighting, ask an electrician to recommend a contractor that installs lighting for you. You should choose a contractor who uses high-quality bulbs that produce very little heat and are therefore more eco-friendly. LEDs are now available and last much longer than incandescent bulbs. LED’s also use much less electricity than incandescent lights and last up to ten times longer.
When considering where to put lights, make sure there aren’t any hidden or hazardous objects that could pose a hazard. There should also be no foot or vehicle traffic that could cause interference with your landscape plans. For example, if you are planning to place a light in a driveway, try to put it as far away from the edge of the driveway as possible. Also avoid placing a light near any trees, overhanging shrubs, overgrown vegetation, or other objects that might be potentially dangerous. If you must have temporary or seasonal garden lights, be sure they are placed away from areas where there are lots of potential hazards.
Now that you know some of the basics in this topic, what makes the best landscape lighting will largely depend on your budget and personal taste. The type you choose will be partially determined by the style you are going for. One of the most popular styles these days is zero-voltage landscape lights, which are excellent for gardens, alleys, and patios. There are many different varieties, including solar-powered, battery-operated, and traditional types, so be sure to do your research before making your purchase. If you don’t care too much about the look of your lighting, it doesn’t matter as much as long as it is effective and low-maintenance.