With summertime on the horizon thoughts turn to all things outdoors. There’s nothing like long lazy evenings with family and friends on the deck or in the outdoor kitchen enjoying sumptuous barbecue fare under the stars. No outdoor entertainment is really complete though without this Toronto landscaping hack: smartly deployed outdoor lighting. A well-designed outdoor lighting scheme can transform a yard from ordinary to extraordinary and leave an impression your guests won’t soon forget, from wining and dining to barbecues and fondue nights. In this post we’ll examine outdoor lighting from the perspective of the landscaping contractor.
Outdoor Lighting: Find Magic in the Dark
There are any number of approaches the landscaping contractor can take when designing a backyard lighting scheme. Much will depend on the number and type of outdoor features like trees, fences and the like but, that aside, these are our favorite types of outdoor lighting to complete your Toronto landscaping:
✔ String lighting – Running strings of lights across the patio or deck will evoke the Tuscan countryside right here in Toronto and allow you to create old world ambiance without breaking the bank. String lights are easy to install, maintain and move. You can also use different colour lights, different bulb shapes and vary the spacing of the bulbs to fit the occasion. Whatever string lights may lack in elegance they more than make up for in charm.
✔ LED Lights – LED or Light Emitting Diodes are all the rage when it comes to outdoor lighting and for a number of excellent reasons. LED light is soft and clean and as intense or atmospheric as you want it to be. LEDs can produce different colour light and are an excellent way to accent walkways, illuminate the pool, bath walls in subtle washes of colour and project light across space. They’re also unbelievably energy efficient and long lasting.
✔ Pendant lights – Pendants are commonly employed to bring light into places that are typically poorly lit or which may need an accent light. Drop pendant lights from the pergola over the main outdoor dining table and bring the space to dazzling life. In an outdoor kitchen pendant lights can be used to great effect over a service island. Run several together hanging from a common framework and create an air of sophistication and luxury.
✔ Wall sconces – Wall sconces are not a primary light source. They’re use to create visual accents and as fill lights. If you have a walled pathway running between the home and patio or between the patio and pool area install wall sconces to generate warmth and visual interest. Sconces can also be put to effective use on pergola columns and as accent lights on either side of your outdoor fireplace.
✔ Tiki torches – Tiki torches are a bit of a cliché but any good landscaping contractor knows they can still be extremely useful when it comes to creating atmosphere and adding visual flare to an outdoor space. Use them to denote the edges of the outdoor dining area, to provide guidance along pathways and to put the finishing touches on the pool area. Tiki torches are available in a variety of sizes and styles and aren’t just for luau’s anymore.
Use light to give purpose and context to different areas. Use it to illuminate and create atmosphere. Use outdoor lighting to create focal points and guide guests safely down pathways and stairs. There are no limits to what you can do with outdoor lighting today and no reason you shouldn’t make it an integral part of your outdoor summertime experience.
Share with us your vision for making the outdoors come alive under the glow of lights. Call the premier Toronto landscaping contractor, M.E. Contracting, for more information and ideas about how to bring your outdoor space to life this summer using the array of contemporary lighting options available.