Landscape Lighting | How Do You Design A Landscape Lighting Plan?

Installing an outdoor landscape lighting device is a perfect way to add charm to your home yard, walkway and entrance areas, curbing appeal and health. Plus, if you have an existing system, it can be easily upgraded or adapted to reflect new layouts, styles or updates to landscaping. In this article you can learn the fundamentals of how to plan the lighting for the landscape.

It's better to find a few products before you start ordering goods to prevent additional distractions, visits to the supermarket, or much worse — incompatible parts. First, we recommend grabbing a notepad and pencil and doing a walkthrough of your property in order to get a sense of how you imagine your system.

Generic ideas to remember as you plan

  • Decide which places or items outside you want to illuminate.
  • Pick the lighting methods that match.
  • Choose the accessories and fixtures to offer you the desired effect.
  • Choose the power source, be panel or low-voltage (more commonly).
  • Pick the bulbs that match.

Techniques to light the landscape

Spotlight or Accent lighting

Landscape spotlights concentrate a guided, bright beam to illuminate your garden's focal points: roses, tiny shrubs, and statues. This produces sparkling islands of value in your lighting design for the countryside.


Positioning the light next to an unusual surface will bring out the tree bark grain, a masonry wall, shingles of wood or an enticing screen. Smooth surface grazing is normally not advised.


Light the item to create fascinating shadows on the wall or other vertical surfaces from the front and below.


If you cover lights behind and below a tree or brush, the same wondrous result is accomplished as when you see it on a cliff, silhouetted against the sky at dusk.

Pool and Illumination Fountains

In lakes and at fountains, underwater illumination produces spectacular results. To enhance suspense, mount a dimmer that switches lights on. Note: Water may be used as a reflector by highlighting the field below the reflecting sheet.

Downlighting or lighting up field

Place lighting devices high up in trees or on the building to spread wide illumination across large spaces. Landscape flood lighting helps you to entertain after dark in your backyard or patio field, and has double duty for health and protection. The downlight is positioned close to the ground for highlighting flower beds, paths, or steps.

Lighting Cross

In a striking perspective, the illumination of a tree or statue from two or more sides reveals the tridimensional form.


Lights directed upward (sometimes hidden in the ground) produce a highly dramatic, theater-like effect. Using it on the surfaces of unusual plants, a monument or textured walls. Spectacular images of fall leaves or blowing water. Focus the light on your yard 's primary plants or objects;

Diffused or spread lighting

Where circular light patterns on flower beds, greater shrubbery, or ground cover are necessary, spread lights cover a broader area with low-level lighting. For patios, bridges, driveways and roads several structures, such as these bollards, cast gently diffused illumination. Wall brackets have a common role for the lighting. It should illuminate the path or flower bed more than the actual fixture.


This technique simulates the lovely impact of moonlight passing through trees, creating beautiful shadow shapes, as downlighting while utilizing soft light sources located quite high up.

Countryside illumination Tricks from the Experts

Jeff Emerson, lighting consultant in the trade pricing system Lamps Plus Experts, provides these suggestions in order to obtain a polished feel.

  • Where possible, conceal the source of landscape lighting – except where the fixture itself is a decorative element.
  • Don't exaggerate! In the night a shade of light goes a long way.
  • Be creative about using a mix of lighting techniques.
  • Arrange for an automatic device to turn on and off the lights like a timer.
  • Be prudent about your neighbours. Aim lights so their windows don't shine.

Need to Upgrade Your Home’s Landscape Lighting?

At Frontline Electrical Services we love transforming the homes of our clients’ homes and businesses with amazing landscaping lighting. If you are in the Benicia, Walnut Creek or Fairfield, California or surrounding areas, contact us today at 800-945-0268 (here is a map to our location) and we’ll have one of our certified specialists review your home’s current landscape and give you the best lighting plan you need to make sure your property shines!