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Capture the Beauty of the Night With Landscape Lighting

Enjoy your property long after the sun goes down

As the days get longer and the weather gets warmer, many homeowners in British Columbia are preparing to spend more time outdoors. A well-lit landscape can transform your outdoor living space, creating a warm and inviting atmosphere that's perfect for entertaining or just relaxing on a summer evening. 

But many people think "landscape lighting" involves nothing more than plunking a few solar lights in the garden or turning on the porch light. While these types of lights do serve a basic purpose, they don’t come close to providing the quality illumination professional landscape lighting can offer.

In this post, we'll share some top lighting ideas to help you light up your landscape so you and your guests can linger outdoors long after the sun goes down. 

Set the mood with string lights

String lights are a popular choice for creating a warm and inviting atmosphere in outdoor living spaces.… as well as adding fun and pizazz for your late-night parties! These lights can be hung along a fence, wrapped around a tree, or strung across a patio or pergola to create a cozy and romantic ambiance. 

LED string lights are energy-efficient and long lasting, making them a great investment for your outdoor lighting needs.

Highlight special features with accent lighting

Accent lighting is a great way to highlight the best features of your landscape. Whether it's the beautiful tree planted by your grandfather, a unique sculpture or a favourite water feature, accent lighting can help draw attention to these elements and create an eye-catching focal point. 

Both downlights and uplights can be used to create depth and drama in your outdoor spaces. Downlights are typically mounted on trees, eaves, or other structures and aimed downward to create a soft, diffused light that highlights the texture and shape of plants and other features below. Uplights, of course, are mounted at ground level or on a wall, with their light directed upwards to create an interesting and dramatic effect.

But if you do intend to shine the light upwards, make sure it doesn’t “spill over” and pollute the night sky.

  • Use just the light you need to illuminate your outdoor features. Keep light directed and shielded to prevent spillover, and remember…more doesn’t mean better.
  • Control the colour and intensity of your lights using available technology. 
  • Have your lights on a timer so they’re only on when someone is there to enjoy them (or as needed for security).

Light the way with pathway lighting

A friend’s dad came home after working the late shift one night, tripping over the pigs that escaped from his neighbour’s barn. While loose farm animals aren’t a major concern for most people, you do need to light paths and stairways to guide everyone safely from point A to point B. 

Post lights, in-ground potlights and step lights can be installed along walkways, driveways, and other high-traffic areas to light up the path and prevent tripping hazards. Safety may be their primary function, but that doesn’t stop them from being beautiful too! 

Enhance your curb appeal

If you think your front yard looks amazing during the day, wait until you see what it looks like all lit up after dark! Outdoor lighting creates an attractive and welcoming ambiance, highlights your home's best features and makes it look like a high-end resort. 

Besides looking beautiful, a well-lit property deters intruders and guides everyone safely to your front door — including first responders and the guy or gal who delivers your pizza.

Light up pools and water features

If you intend to use your pool at night, it’s essential to have the area surrounding the pool — and the pool itself — well-lit for safety reasons. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be beautiful too. 

  • Underwater lights can be installed in a pool, pond or even a fountain to create a mesmerizing effect.
  • Use uplights to highlight special features, such as a waterfall in a swimming pond or surrounding trees.
  • Downlights shining right on the water’s surface should illuminate the entire pool to keep swimmers safe.
  • Installing additional lighting to your pool area or water feature can help create a soothing and tranquil ambiance, perfect for unwinding after a long day. 

Work with a professional

Installing an outdoor lighting system isn’t a DIY project. Working with a licensed electrician and professional designer to install your landscape lighting is important for several reasons:

  • A licensed electrician has the training and experience to ensure that your landscape lighting is installed safely and meets all electrical safety codes and regulations.
  • Professionally installed lighting systems can be designed to meet your specific needs and preferences, giving you years of enjoyment.
  • The work will be under warranty, giving you peace of mind in the event that something goes wrong with your lighting system. 
  • Professionals have access to better-quality fixtures and know which finishes and types to use to create the desired effect.
  • A lighting specialist can design and install a landscape lighting system that is energy-efficient, using LED bulbs and other energy-saving technologies to reduce your energy consumption and lower your electricity bills.

By incorporating some or all of these lighting ideas, you can transform your outdoors into a warm and inviting space that's perfect for entertaining, relaxation, and enjoyment all summer — and all night — long.

If you have any further questions about how to use landscape lighting to light up your outdoors or would like a lighting system designed and installed for your landscape, get in touch. We’re always happy to help.

Written by  Matt Vandenberg