Light Up Your Landscape

With such a wealth of creative garden lighting available it can be difficult to decide what to choose. Explore these options to choose the right lighting for your landscape.

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Electric Lighting

Where to Site
Use fluorescents for wall lamps, post lights, etc, and halogen flood lights for security and colored effects.

Extent of Illumination
Varies according to fixture—halogens can illuminate entire garden. Colored fluorescents are for bright, modern effects.

Expense
Inexpensive to buy but running costs add up: use low-energy bulbs and fluorescent strips/halogen lights where possible.

Installation
Lighting can run off a wall socket or transformer. Consult a qualified electrician for installation.

Maintenance
Replace bulbs when they burn out. Keep wall lamps and infrared sensors clean.

Fiber Optic Lighting

Where to Site
In paving and decking for a starlight effect, and in water features. Transparent tubing outlines hard landscaping.

Extent of Illumination
Soft, low-level lighting set into decking. Can brighten water sculptures with metal halide source.

Expense
DIY kits are fairly reasonably priced, but specialist installation will be more expensive.

Installation
May need specialist installation. Transformer and light source will need waterproof sitting.

Maintenance
Very low heat and UV output. Low maintenance: clean deck and paving fiber optics with gentle cleansers.

Solar-Powered Lighting

Where to Site
Edge of pathways/patios; in ponds (floating/rock lights); on walls; by plants. Some types suitable as spotlights.

Extent of Illumination
Low. Units fitted with modern LEDs are brighter. Strength depends on battery type and age. Gentle lighting for paths.

Expense
Expensive initially compared to standard units, but consider convenience and zero running costs, plus longevity.

Installation
Safe and easy DIY lighting. Needs sunny spot to operate well. May not stay on as long in winter.

Maintenance
Photovoltaic cells need regular cleaning. Good quality nickel-cadmium batteries could last up to 20 years.

Solar Powered Lanterns Provide Nightlight for GardenEnlarge Photo+Shrink Photo-DK - Garden Design © 2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Excerpted from Garden Design

©Dorling Kindersley Limited 2009

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