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Outdoor lighting improves the look of your outdoor area and increases protection. Done right, it also increases the value of your house. Our landscape lighting planning guide explains the various options in detail. From there, you choose your design. When you know what you want the result to look like, begin to install your perfect landscape lighting. At completion, you enjoy the illumination of your home and yard for years to come.

Our guide shows steps in planning your garden lighting schemes as you learn about outdoor lighting design. The best artificial light makes a massive difference in the look of your outdoor environment. Moreover, it highlights beautiful features, stretching your patch. The right outdoor lighting provides an enhanced area to cook and entertain even more!

This landscape lighting planning guide will give you all the information about your landscape design. Let’s Begin!



Outdoor Landscape Lighting Planning

 Make a diagram of your thoughts on graph paper. Sketch in all prominent landscape features, such as walls, decks, trees, sidewalks, walkways, and garden beds. Make a gradient of what you want to illuminate, and then determine which fixtures will be most effective.

Make an effort to use a range of lighting methods. Stop haze for both travelers and neighbors while avoiding light and dim environments. To stop the “runway” look, one must not put path lights too close together. You’ll also have to choose a fixture type from a variety of options!



Consider How You Use Your Outdoor Area

Think about how you can use your outdoor room when selecting any decorative lighting designs. Is protection and safety decoration all you need for your front staircase and entrance? The lighting design you choose should correspond to how you plan to use your room. So, before making a final call, make sure you’ve addressed all of the ways you’ll use those outdoor areas at night.



Choose Your Style for Landscape Lighting Planning

The decision-making process simplifies as you identify the lighting fixture specifications for each area of your home. As a result, strategically positioned floodlights will brighten up the darkest parts of your backyard for security purposes.

Accent lighting, such as spotlights, can use to highlight a particular architectural function on your house. You’re often not restricted to a single theme. If you want to illuminate your bar-be-que section, you don’t have to brighten up your dining area as well.



Creating Zones

LED technology allows for a wide range of colors and intensities in landscape lighting. Each zone complements and blends into the next, suggesting a distinct focus or intended use.

Intelligent technology allows you to track individual fixtures from your smartphone. Many electrical lines may connect to a single transformer, enabling independent control within each bar or “area.”



Don’t Light Everything.

The assumption that anything needs to lite is a typical blunder. Creating shadows is just as critical as creating light in a successful lighting design. Shades are what give the style texture and contrast. You could easily add an ample flood light if you needed it to illuminate. Landscape lighting aims to bring an aesthetic aspect to outdoor lighting. You’ll find a delicate balance of light and shadow in a stunning example of landscape lighting.



Do You Need Of A Professional?

The outcome and style of lighting you choose to achieve will determine whether you can mount outdoor lighting designs yourself or hire a specialist. Of course, battery-powered lamps and the best solar lights are cable-free and can be quickly mounted. However, effects get a bit more complicated when it comes to more permanent, wired systems.


landscape lighting guide



Types of Landscape Lighting Fixtures

Using specialty lighting to your reduced voltage design system will help you get the most from it. There are strategies for every corner of the yard, from patio lights to submarine pool lights, to help you achieve a vintage look.

There are several different kinds of landscape lighting fixtures that you can use in your backyard or house. Even then, you might become aware of a few things. Following are some of the most popular styles of outdoor lighting fixtures to consider for your outdoor space:


1.  Use Spotlights

Micro outdoor spotlights may highlight particular features of your yard, such as trees, plants. Since these lights come in various sizes, you can mix and match them to get the results you want from pinpoint to flood.


2.  Use Deck Lights

Deck or step lighting can help you make the most of your outdoor areas at night, whether you have a deck or a patio seating area. You’ll have a great-looking room, and these lights will make your desk area safer and more secure. Look for patterns that can affix to deck posts or incorporated into the stair treads.


3.  LED Bulbs

LEDs use much less electricity than halogen or incandescent lamps, allowing you to fuel your rig with fewer expenses. You won’t have to replace bulbs, and they’re nearly maintenance-free. Choose landscape lights with dedicated LED units, or replace old bulbs with new LED styles if you already have a setup.


4.  Submersible Lights

With a submerged landscape light, you can highlight landscape pond areas, garden fountains, and more. This kind of specialty fixture is submersible and waterproof. Moreover, it can use to illuminate ponds and fountains on your properties at night.


5.  Bollard Lights

Bollard lights are the best item on our list of outdoor lights for your home’s backyard. These lights are one of the most popular types of exterior lighting fixtures. These lights are typically used to highlight a pathway without using floodlights.


6.  Flood Lights

Floodlights use to shed light on specific locations in your backyard, which have a beam speed of up to 120 degrees. For example, whether you want to draw attention to your driveway or a unique feature in your backyard, a floodlight is a good choice.

Furthermore, these forms of outside lighting can improve a home’s protection and visibility. Overall, floodlights should be on your list if you want a full range of exterior lights for your backyard. Besides, they are both aesthetically appealing and chic.


7.  Path Lights

A well-lit backyard will elevate the appearance of your garden, making it seem more sophisticated and aesthetic. Most homeowners tend to keep their outside area’s stairway or walkway tidy but inviting. Path lights are the optimal solution for such requirements.

Path lights are a collection of lights that serve as signs to help people navigate their way out of or around your yard. They’re used to increase the property’s curb appeal and make remote areas cleaner and more secure for tourists and locals.


8.  String Lights

String lights offer a simple outdoor fixture that mounts in your yard if you prefer a minimalistic look. They not only make your backyard look sleek, but they also spread light uniformly across the room. String lights install easily in your backyard depending on whether you have a sitting area or a canopy. Also, they provide some versatility as you may move them and adjust quite easily.



landscape lighting guide



What Are Different Wiring Methods?


1.  Daisy Chain Wiring

Just one end fixture attaches to the transformer in the daisy-chain system, which requires an end-to-end connection inside a set of fixtures. This approach helps you conserve cable. However, it’s not suitable for groups of scattered beams. In fact, it may also cause a voltage drop, causing lights to fade as the series progresses.


2.  Hub Wiring

In this, your mainline leads to a central center, which is where each light is individually linked. It guarantees that each light receives the same voltage. You may also use the center to attach groups of lights. Although each group will start with the same supplied voltage, a voltage drop will occur. The hub approach uses a little more wire than other techniques. However, but it removes or decreases voltage drop and cuts down on the number of in-ground splitters.


3.  Loop Wiring

A set of lights operates from both ends in the loop system. In a set, the last light returns to the first element or capacitor. It could be an easy fix for a voltage drop issue with a group of lamps, but it can make potential troubleshooting more difficult. While it lowers voltage drop and ensures consistent lighting around your fixtures, it also increases the amount of wiring required.


4.  Split Wiring

Three-wire runs connect directly to the transformer. Since the split approach reduces voltage drop in each group as a whole, it can also happen within a set of such groups. Calculate the voltage drop for each party to see which wire is the best.



Basic Tools Required

Before you begin installing your lights, double-check if you have all of the required equipment and accessories. Here’s a rapid rundown of what you’ll need. Things not on this list may need for your installation.

  • Landscape lights
  • Transformer
  • Wire cutters
  • Wire strippers
  • Silicone-filled wire nuts
  • Voltage tester
  • Tape measure


Top 15 Landscape Design Ideas


1.  Light up Branches

One thing you can do to lighten up your backyard is to attach fairy lights to the branches.’ It’s a brilliant idea to light up a tree, so it becomes the focal point of the garden when you’re going inside and out.’ It’s lovely to gaze out at a lit backyard.’

A simple string or two fairy lights will completely transform a garden tree, as shown in this illustration. From all points, including the surrounding walls, the warm light produces a magical vista. It’s the ideal way to liven up bare winter trees, and it will also give a lovely dose of ambiance to the new green foliage in the autumn.


2.  Illuminate Potted Trees

This beautiful look is a lovely complement to our patio lighting ideas and will immediately elevate your front porch. Since the LED lights are pre-attached to a discrete cable net, recreating the look is a breeze.

Drape it over your olive tree, box balls, or other prized topiary to receive a warm welcome each time you return home. Furthermore, since the ones pictured above are battery-operated, there’s no need to think about running extra wires. With compact fluorescent lamps, these wide and narrow planters look fantastic. LED lights may also use to show various colors.


3.  Hanging Lanterns

A plethora of lights can produce a compelling look. It is aptly illustrated above, where a swarm of hanging lanterns creates an ethereal scene. If you’re concerned about a possible fire threat, use LED candles instead of actual candles. These patio lamps create a romantic atmosphere in your garden or patio, enabling you to spend longer outside.

It’s a strange way to breathe new life and precisely what you need to transform an evening outdoor feel extra unique. ‘If you have a plug port, this would be better, but solar power energy is an excellent option if you don’t.


4.  Solar Bottle Bulbs

“Lighting in a glass” is how one of the most stunning solar string lights is best described. When illuminated, the Tofu lights have a bottle-like lamp with 5 LED lights inside that look like a bottle overflowing with fireflies. As dusk sets, the twinkling LED lights begin to shine, thanks to a small solar panel on top charging the battery.

Since the bulbs are IP65 resistant, they can leave outdoors. Such string lights come with two alternative modes: a lithium battery powered by solar and AA batteries that can use when there is no sunshine. They are appropriate for a variety of weather conditions.


5.  Solar Rope Lights

These lights are beautiful and bright enough to light up your outdoor space or add a pop of color to your decor. They’re also fantastic for the garden, and they don’t look like standard patio lights. They’re not as bright as regular lights, but they’re great for accenting walkways and are powered by a battery and solar energy.

These lights are also energy efficient because they do not require electricity to operate. Installing some of these lights in your house will help you save energy and money on your power bill. You will also spare yourself and others the hassle of taking out a torch in the middle of the night while still helping the environment.


6.  Solar Deck Light Design

They can be installed in minutes and can tolerate rain and snow while lasting for a long time. Solar decking lights will provide outdoor deck illumination with no hassle and interruption. There is no need to think about wiring because these round and square solar decking lights are entirely self-contained.

Map the light’s recess spot, cut it out with a jigsaw, and force your decking lights into position. Solar deck lights are simple to mount, and most of them have an automated function that turns on the light as darkness approaches.


7.  Water Wall

Water walls are typically a high-ticket item that isn’t inexpensive. They look stunning as the light reflects off the flowing water, and the calming sound will bring a relaxing atmosphere to your backyard. Try a self-contained off-the-shelf version water wall for a more economical alternative. Link it to a power source to get a neglected corner of the garden to life. Water enhances the contrast of light and dark, adds visual appeal and activity, and adds depth to the outdoor living spaces at night.


8.  Make an Impact with Uplights

Try installing floodlights or Uplights under your favorite trees for a glorious outdoor tree lighting concept. It would attract attention to their configuration and details right away, creating an aesthetic effect that is ideal for larger plots. Choose the most visible trees and have the most impact.

There are plenty of options for outdoor tree Uplights, but that doesn’t mean any old outside light can suffice! When it comes to making a subtle glow, keep in mind that selecting too sharp or bulky lights can be a challenge. You can hire a garden lighting specialist if you want to go all out for your landscape uplighting.


9. Canopy Style

Why not transform a big tree on your land into the desired destination if you’re fortunate enough to have one? With a few festoon lights and maybe a hanging lantern or two, you can build a stunning entertaining room.

Exterior canopy lights will also complement the aesthetics of your commercial building and serve as a welcome sign for your guests. The suitable outdoor canopy light fittings are hidden and provide a welcoming, clean, and appealing atmosphere.

The rustling of your twinkly, leafy canopy in the wind can add to the tranquil atmosphere. What you need now is the finest garden furniture and a soothing cocktail for a relaxing evening.


10.  Vintage Feel

For a trendy theme, use vintage-style bulbs in your garden or patio. With their exposed filaments, their stripped-back look creates a striking aesthetic. Because of the soft light produced by these bulbs, you can group many of them to create an enticing glow without glare, for an industrial feel, outdoor hangover seating.

With their antique outdoor light fittings, you can brighten up your entryway, balcony, or backyard. Choose from a variety of period-inspired designs for wall or flush mounts, pendants, and post lamps. These vintage LED lights can also use as a security precaution by supplying enough illumination for security cameras.


11.  Consider Brick Edging in your Landscape Lighting Planning

Nobody will make you a reason to walk on your lawn with lights along the brick edging of your driveway. What do you think? You will now devote as much time and money to maintaining your yard as you want. House members and visitors alike have a direct path to the front entrance, even though the sky is gloomy. Any step down the road will begin to feel like a trip to a faraway land. It is a lighting system idea that is easy to implement, attractive, and practical.


12. Light up Flower Planters

Planters that light up, also known as lit planters, are excellent light sources for landscaping. Your visitors will always compliment you on how lovely you are. Some of them have LED lights, which enable them to display a variety of colors. Although this is fantastic, they also fulfill their task of growing your flowers to be the focal point throughout the day. Get a couple of these lighted-up planters in your pool field, on your lawn, to give your room the extra boost.



13.  Add Underwater Lighting into your Landscape Lighting Planning

Today, having a pool on your patio is no longer enough to qualify you as excellent; you must even have lighting in your pool. Some people believe the lights in the pool are dangerous, but it is essential to remember that these lights are specifically intended for use underwater.

Any property will benefit from a beautiful setting that includes water, and underwater lighting can bring a touch of elegance. It is an example of a landscape lighting concept that necessitates the assistance of a specialist. Underwater lighting will help set the tone while still improving visibility.



14. A fence with Christmas lights

If you would like it to be Christmas every day, it can be. At the very least, you can pretend by keeping the Christmas decorations up all year. Don’t worry about the nosy neighbors – it’s your home; follow the rules! Everyone adores Christmas lights because they turn the environment into something more magical and bright.

That’s the exact outcome you want to achieve. When it comes to landscaping, you have two choices. It would help if you wrapped it around your rooftop or the top of your fence. Moreover, your home will become the talk of the neighborhood.


15. Mix lights on a patio table

You can now organize a small evening get-together for no other reason than to show off your home. Patios are lovely, but a well-lit patio is much more so. Using different-sized bulbs overhead the table for lighting adds more character to your environment. It also illuminates the whole area, allowing people seated across from one another at a patio table to see each other’s faces and engage in stimulating conversation.


In Summary, Your Landscape Lighting Planning Essentials


It’s a good idea to use lighting concepts that highlight your home’s best features while still improving visibility. In your landscape lighting planning, use these concepts that are simple to incorporate. Of course, the price varies based on the model you choose. However, but there is one to fit every budget. Prepare to be the house on your street that can use as a reference point. Let the lights shine!

The cooler months are a terrific time to begin your landscape lighting planning. Have you started yet?


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Lumens and Lighting Facts (energy.gov)