Designing With Light Outdoors

  • Turn your garden into a wonderland at night
  • Make your home stand out in the neighborhood
  • Expand outdoor living and entertaining after dark
  • Improve safety and security on your property

What Landscape Lighting Can Do For You?

If you take pride in your grounds – the tasteful trees, the statuesque shrubbery, the beautiful garden – why not enjoy them by night as well as by day? The right outdoor lighting allows you to derive the full benefits of your costly landscaping after the sun goes down. It also provides better safety and security.

Aesthetic Benefits

  • Show off the beauty of your home after dark
  • Highlight favorite flowers and shrubs
  • Dramatize trees, pool, fountain, masonry texture, statuary and other focal points
  • Relax in your backyard or entertain on your patio or deck

Practical Benefits

  • Safety : good lighting on steps, walks and driveways helps avoid accidents
  • Security : floodlighting and other landscape lighting will deter prowlers and vandals. Prowlers will avoid a well-lit yard.

Investment : Grounds which are dramatically lighted at night look like a luxurious estate, increasing the resale value of your property.

Place a mini floor uplight behind a plant and it will cast beautiful shadows up onto the ceiling.

Close-By-House

Illuminating side and rear entries to the house, as well as walls with easy access widows, can discourage prowlers and thieves.

 

 

Driveway

Highlighting your driveway with light also improves safety and security, while the delineation creates an attractive pattern.

 

 

Rear Yard

Floodlighting from house or trees helps discourage intruders and vandals. Where you can’t conceal the light source, select units which look attractive – not industrial. Arrange for automatic timers, photocells or motion sensors.

 

Front Entry

Provide a warm welcome after dark. Select a wall bracket which casts adequate illumination on front steps, as well as lighting the keyhole and house numbers.

 

 

Steps and Paths

Frequently neglected, but also important to avoid accidents in dark locations, are low path lights, post lanterns and lights attached to the house.

 

 

Garage

Ample lighting over the garage will enhance both safety and security, particularly when other lights are not on.

 

 

Compact and durability

It may seem obvious that bulbs which deliver more light and are more efficient generally cost more. Some cost considerably more, but you must also compare the rated lamp life, since some lamps costing several times more usually last several times longer.

Incandescent A

Standard type commonly used around the home. Inexpensive, but yields less light than other incandescents.

Incandescent B

Reflector type, either flood or concentrated spotlight. About twice the light output of A bulbs.

Flood

Concentrated Spotlight

The wide variety of available bulbs (called “lamps” in the industry) means that you can tailor your choice to your needs.

Bulb type and light output

You may prefer soft illumination in some areas, bright in others. Watts are a measure of electricity consumed, but some bulbs yield more light than others of equal wattage. Remember the longer the distance of light throw, or the greater the intensity desired, the more light output required.

Efficiency and energy savings

Some types are more efficient than others. Low voltage, for example, can save energy by concentrating light beams, but it generally lacks the equivalent beam throw of line voltage. Newer 65-and 120-watt incandescent bulbs yield up to 25% more light. New compact fluorescent bulbs provide soft lighting and the highest energy savings. Mercury vapor bulbs offer strong illumination with energy savings, but project a cool color suitable only for greenery.

Quartz/Incand Tungsten-Halogen

Compact light source which provides a consistently bright light. Also available as a reflector (MR) and as a projector (PAR) type. These fit into smaller and less obtrusive fixtures.

Fluorescent

White long tubes are primarily used for walls, banisters and signs, compact fluorescent bulbs provide a soft light quality and the highest energy saving. (Some temperature restrictions apply.)

Mercury Vapor/High Pressure Sodium

This family, known as high-intensity discharge, provide intense light at low energy cost. Their color renditions limit use, and they do not go on immediately – they must warm up.

Note: Most of the above types are available for either 120-volt or 12-volt systems, but you must specify the system. Fluorescent, Mercury Vapor and High Pressure Sodium are for 120-volt only.