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Uplighting for Landscape Lighting

Landscape Lighting Guide

Uplighting for Landscape Lighting

Uplighting is a staple of landscape lighting design. In fact, when you picture landscape lighting, you’re probably picturing uplighting. It’s the foundational lighting technique that illuminates trees, home exteriors and landscape features. Working in concert with light layers like path lights and hardscape lights, uplighting is the star of every exterior lighting concept.

Uplighting Landscape Pictures
Landscape Modern farmhouse accent VLO

Uplights come in different shapes and sizes, understanding the best one for your project will ensure your light will be just right.

Accent fixtures are often used for uplighting because they allow you to select a wide range of beam angles and lumen levels to customize every application. Accent fixtures can be mounted in the ground or directly to the tree using a tree-mount junction box.

VLO (Variable Lumen Output) accent lights offer the ability to adjust lighting as young trees grow, and allows you to adjust the lumen level on site for each tree as needed.

Consider the height and width of the tree or architectural feature and any obstructions to the light beam such as branches when selecting your lumen output.

Beam angles make all the difference in landscape design. When choosing a beam angle, remember that the beam diameter will increase with distance.

  • If you’re new to lighting, we suggest using a 35° beam angle to start and then vary the angle depending on what you are illuminating

  • A narrow beam (example: 10° degree) would be for illuminating the top of a tall tree or peek of a house.

  • A wide beam angle (example: 60°) would be good on a conifer where you have a wide area to illuminate

Our landscape catalogs are full of helpful charts to help you complete your project. See our voltage calculator and beam chart in the carousel below.

Beam Angle

Landscape Lighting Tips

Uplighting columns create beautiful shadow patterns and can be illuminated with landscape lighting mounted at the base of the column to shine upward.

Also consider the color of the foliage you are lighting – blue or silver foliage is best accentuated with 3000K which is a brighter, white light while red or green foliage or wood arbors are best lit with a 2700K warm white.

Uplighting Image

Aim to create contrast between light and shadows. An overlit tree can distract from an otherwise balanced landscape lighting design. To learn more check out our article on Tree Lighting for additional helpful tips

tree lighting
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