Outdoor landscape lighting in the yard and garden can be for aesthetics, safety, and security. With the installation of quality decorative outdoor lighting fixtures, the garden can be enjoyed in the evening and night as well as during the day. Creatively installed path lights, accent spotlights, and even deck or pond fixtures can cast artful light and artistic illumination across your yard.
Requirements for Landscape Lighting
Typical outdoor landscape lighting installations consist of an outdoor transformer, low-voltage wire, and robust low-voltage metal fixtures. For a residential lighting project in Victoria, the transformer would typically be around 300 watts depending on the number of lights and length of the run of lights. These transformers are modular and can either be light-sensitive or can have a digital timer added. The connecting wire is usually 10 or 12-gauge low-voltage copper wire and can be buried directly in the ground with no risk of electric shock. Professional quality low-voltage fixtures can take incandescent or LED bulbs. Landscape light fixtures like these, while expensive, are far more attractive and resilient than the cheap plastic versions found at most hardware stores.
Outdoor Lighting Styles
Path lights illuminate the ground and often form the “backbone” of a lighting design. They can be placed along a walkway to ensure a safe and welcoming passage. Real artistry comes with the use of accents or spotlights in the garden. These small fixtures can create dramatic effects through uplighting and silhouetting of trees, shrubs, buildings, rocks and other features. Bamboo looks particularly stunning when uplit.
There are other specialized lights available for almost any application in the landscape. Deck lights are usually designed to fit on a narrow post or on a stair riser. These fixtures are subtle enough that they are hardly noticeable during the day, but they illuminate the area by casting a warm glow for ambiance and safety. Pond lights are another specialized fixture. They are waterproof lights that can be placed in a pond, a waterfall, or even in a simple water feature made of a large ceramic pot. The effect of light in moving water can be stunning.
Installing Lights in Your Garden
One of the best times to install landscape lighting is during a garden renovation or irrigation installation where you can take advantage of existing irrigation trenches for running cable. However, because the lighting fixtures are low voltage, it is relatively easy to get them anywhere in the garden at any time. The labour costs of installing landscape lighting are reasonable. The fixtures can be costly, but they are good quality and will last for years. A typical residential lighting installation in Victoria is usually in the $1000-$2000 range. In the context of a full landscape renovation, it is well worth budgeting for. Lighting can provide years of enjoyment, even in the winter when you look out and see a mature tree glowing, reminding you that Spring will come again!
Our team at True Earth Landscapes can install a variety of features in your garden, from landscape lighting to fences to pathways and walls.
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