No matter how much work you've put into your lawn and garden, your outdoor space will look much more dramatic with the proper landscape lighting.
Spotlights, when correctly placed and aimed, add a lot of personality to any outdoor scene. What do you want people to notice first — special trees? Architectural elements such as columns? A garden fountain? A spotlight is sure to focus the attention where you choose. You can also experiment with colored spots, which can evoke different feelings.
Floodlights are larger and less focused than spots, providing more overall light. These are nice when you want to evenly light an entire area rather than highlight a certain plant or element. But use floodlights sparingly; too many will make your backyard resemble a high school football field! A couple of strategically placed floodlights should provide sufficient deck or patio lighting.
Well lights, which are sunken into the earth, provide garden lighting from below, which draws focus down to the ground. They can provide general lighting or may be placed next to something (such as around the base of a tree or right next to the edge of a building) to create a dramatic, eye-catching effect.
For a truly different look, consider silhouette lighting. Silhouette lighting is spotlighting an object from the back to bring out interesting shapes. You could also secure ambient lights somewhere overhead so that a gentle glow is cast down, mimicking moonlight. A clever idea is to hang soft lights from tree branches or tall patio posts.
Line your driveway, walkway or garden path with low-hanging garden lanterns or well lights and watch people gravitate to the space! A lit path not only encourages visitors to wander, but also provides safety at night. Try using lit bollards, or decorative pillars lit from within, which cast a soft glow in all directions, as well as adding an architectural touch to your garden.
Whichever style of landscape lighting you prefer, seek professional help to figure out how many lights you need, as well as size, wattage and ideal placement. Too much light will ruin the effect, while low-voltage landscape lighting can be too subtle. Misplaced lights can highlight the wrong elements of your design. A trusted landscaper can help you design a beautiful, unique lighting scheme.