Understanding Landscape Lighting Terms

The trees, plants, and architecture surrounding your home or business creates a beautiful scene during the day. However, once night falls, your lovely landscape design disappears into the darkness unless you use outdoor lighting.


With proper lighting, you can light up just about anything, to include paths, trees, buildings, sculptures, pergolas pools, ponds, and driveways. There are so many options. So where do you begin?


There are many terms for landscape lighting, and some of them overlap and can become confusing. Not to worry, we’ve compiled a helpful guide to break down the essential terms of landscape lighting.








Uplighting is the term for when you place a light a few feet away from the base of an object to highlight the object from below. You can adjust the distance between the object and the light to create different looks.


Silhouetting and shadowing are two types of uplighting. With each technique, landscape designers place a light behind a large plant or an object and point the light toward a nearby wall to create a visually appealing shadow or silhouette.


Uplighting is a great way to highlight elements in your landscape, such as a work of art, flag, water fixture or large flowering plants.




Down lighting is the term for landscape lighting that directs light down, lighting only the intended area. Down lighting accents landscape planting beds, water features walls, statues and seating areas from above.


Down lights can be fixed to walls, placed under steps, or placed under eaves in a manner that keeps them out of sight during the day. When night falls, their light defines an area with a surrounding glow that draws in guests.


Moon lighting is a form of down lighting where you can attach multiple lights above, such as in a tree, to create the effect of moonlight.


Concealed Led light in steps is a downlight.





Path lighting


At its most basic, path and step lighting exists to keep the walker safe. When creating your landscape lighting scheme, you want to make sure all obstacles and turns are well illuminated.


Your walkways and paths can be highlighted not only to light the way for safety reasons, but also to create a feeling of elegance. Think of your path as a royal walkway or an entrance to an exotic palace.


You can create any ambiance you want with your path lighting. A carefully lit path can provide a sense of romance or adventure. It should make the viewer want to go and see where the path leads.


You could use ground lights or bollard lights in a pathway. Large areas use tall pole lights.


Fascade Lighting


Fascade lighting highlights the fascade of a building. It can be warm white or RGB light. The output and beams depends on the height of the wall you want to highlight. It can be uplight, downlight or up and down wall light.


The surfaces, colors, and shapes in the natural environment of the human eye function differently depending on the type of lighting.


In addition to creating an aesthetic effect, lighting your garden, pathway, stairs, pool, or access road will lead to greater safety movement. Landscape lighting scheme should be used to emphasize beautiful details in the yard, and to hide the flaws.


You’ve pulled out all the stops to turn your villa and backyard into a visually inspiring retreat. So why let that hard work disappear at nightfall? Now you can roll back the darkness and put it all on display with the flick of a switch.


When planned and executed correctly, landscape lighting makes the best of what you’ve created by highlighting your villa’s architectural features and drawing attention to your gorgeous plants, trees, water features, sculptures and other landscape treasures.


There are many exciting options and ideas for elevating your landscape design with outdoor lighting.


If you find it all a bit overpowering, a professional landscape lighting team from Milestone will create ways to enhance your space through particular lighting effects that are tailored to your personal landscape and tastes.