Creating an aesthetically pleasing and durable landscape is the ultimate aim of any landscape contractor or designer. However, creating an outdoor lighting arrangement that puts the landscape on display and highlights its attractive features is a sometimes neglected department of landscape design. This makes choosing the right landscape lighting the essential final touch for your landscaping project in State College, PA.
An undulating walkway or driveway can be a binding feature of a landscape design, guiding pedestrians through a yard and making all its areas more easily accessible. Moreover, with natural stone and attractive concrete pavers, these hardscaping elements are beautiful in their own right. Appropriate lighting can help highlight the aesthetics of walkways, whether you want to put the raw beauty of stone or the intricate patterns of pavers on display. Path lights are also essential in keeping your yard safe and usable at night.
Modern path lights are increasingly featured in prominent arrangements that can further accentuate the design. You can also go the more subtle route of using discrete fixtures. Rustic options such as lanterns can also be used to create a unique ambiance. Walkways lined with trees offer you the added possibility of using hanging lights.
Prominent features and gathering areas require special attention in terms of lighting. Spot lights are great tools to highlight individual hardscaping elements such as fireplaces and fire pits, ponds, fountains, and statues. For gathering areas and structures, the choice of wall lighting tends to work better, not only lighting up the area effectively and unobtrusively but also making a patio or outdoor kitchen feel like an extension of the home. For larger areas, wall mounted wash lights are also a great option.
Larger lights must generally be coupled with smaller accent lights in close proximity, making it easier to create the right ambiance to suit the mood. Ambient and accent lighting also works wonderfully with fire elements such as fire pits and fireplaces, giving a subtle illumination that does not drown out the warm glow of the fire.
Choosing the right fixtures is also an important component of outdoor lighting. Accent lights should generally be subtle and recessed while you can experiment with more striking designs for wall mounted sconces and wash lights.
While highlighting the beautiful features of a landscape is an important task, the right lighting plan can also double as a security measure. Security focused lighting tends to offer a wider variety of features such as motion sensing and more discrete designs.
Perimeter lighting is another aspect of security lighting, generally featuring smaller, discrete lighting fixtures with powerful LEDs or bulbs coupled with motion detection technology. With the increasing popularity of LED technology, dimmable lighting controls, as well as the proliferation of motion detection technology, the line between aesthetic landscape lighting and security centric lighting is blurring. As such, it is not uncommon to see path lights doubling as perimeter lighting solutions.