Adding lights to the garden adds an extra dimension and ensures you can enjoy outdoors long after the sun has set. Garden lighting should be the invisible feature in the garden by day, but bring it to life at night.
Use up lighting to highlight trunks of trees or unusual foliage forms. By highlighting the trunk of large established trees in a small area will draw the eye up to the canopy and tricks the brain into thinking the area is larger than it really is. In larger gardens a cluster of up lights in a group of trees at the base of the garden draws your eye past the edge of the alfresco area to a magical world.
Path lighting and step lighting recessed into the path way is a subtle way of directing traffic, increasing safety and featuring varying levels of a garden. By using recessed fixtures they will be at the same level as the paving and not become a safety hazard.
Wall lighting correctly installed will define garden areas, create unusual shadow illusions and accentuate foliage.
The use of spot lights that highlight features, hard landscaping and plants is one of the most commonly used tricks by lighting designers. Spot lights can be mounted at ground level or in trees to emphasise a particular feature. Using a spotlight through soft wispy foliage will create movement in the garden, even in the slightest of breezes.
The use of coloured globes will change the look and feel of a garden and highlight different areas.
Choose quality fittings and fixtures, cheap lights will not last a summer and will end their life on the verge collection the following year. Quality outdoor lights will give years of service, long after the price has been forgotten.
DIY Lighting Tips
- Purchase quality 12 volt fittings and fixtures. Copper, brass or stainless steel will last for years.
- Coastal areas require fittings to be marine grade stainless steel.
Ask your electrician to install an all-weather outdoor power point so the 12 volt system can plug directly into it.