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Light Up Your Garden And Brighten Your Life
Extending Your Living Space
The garden is fast being considered to be an extension to your living space and homeowners are putting as much effort into creating a harmonious environment outside as they are inside. A beautiful garden is also considered to be one of the biggest selling features of a home and can certainly help to add value and appeal.
As the short days of winter recede, many of us will be starting to think about our gardens and dreaming up projects and schemes that we plan to undertake when the days become longer and the weather warmer. For many traditionalists this will mean planting borders, manicuring the lawn and cultivating a myriad of blooms that will add colour and life to their gardens throughout the summer, whilst others will view their garden purely as an area in which to relax.
Garden centres are already stocked with outdoor furniture, ubiquitous decking and the eclectic range of artefacts that are designed to help you enjoy your garden to the full. However, garden lighting is one of the most effective ways that you can improve the look and functionality of your outdoor living space and increases the time that you can appreciate this natural extension to your home. Garden lighting has moved beyond the occasional wall lantern or halogen floodlight illuminating the patio or garden path, blending functionality with creativity. Strategic outdoor lighting enables you to enjoy aspects of your garden at all times of the day or evening, all year 'round, whether for entertainment purposes or your own pleasure.
The garden at night should be considered to be a blank canvas on which one's own creation can evolve. Properly placed lighting can create the most wonderful ambience by silhouetting trees, highlighting favourite shrubs, accenting flowerbeds or reflecting the diamond like sparkle of droplets cascading from a water feature.
The Key to Successful Creative Lighting
The key to successful lighting is to focus in on specific architectural features:
Bring your garden alive after dark by illuminating it with a range of carefully chosen coloured lights:
Subtlety is the key, since a blend of too many colours can give a gaudy appearance, unless of course you have a penchant for theme park styles.
If you are seeking more functional lighting, then low voltage fittings are the best option. Uplighters fitted into decking or patios can add that subtle but necessary source of light when the sun goes down, whether you are entertaining or just relaxing. But there are always more creative possibilities. Recessed lighting can be built into steps and fixed seating or under handrails. Each source of light becomes a feature in itself and creates the individuality and atmosphere that reflects your own needs and personality.
If you are an active barbecuer and you need more direct light, then spotlights that are discretely located but focused on your cooking area are ideal. If safety and security are your concern then there is a wide range of functional but aesthetic lighting available to illuminate steps, paths and driveways and help to prevent accidents after dark. Motion detectors that activate lighting when someone passes by have proved to be a boon for added security and safety. Another way of improving security is to have certain strategically placed lighting linked to photo electric cells that automatically turn on at dusk and off at dawn.
When creating a lighting scheme for your garden you should adopt the less is more approach. The objective must always be to see the landscape and not the lights, with the right balance between aesthetic and functional lighting.
It is important always to use lights that have the correct IP rating and are therefore suitable for outdoor lighting. Although the installation of these types of light is not difficult, it is recommended that you employ a qualified electrician for their installation.
There is a wide range of products on the market from which to choose, but the most cost-effective solution is to buy the best quality you can. By choosing quality products and having them professionally fitted you'll have something that will not only last for years, but also maintains its good looks.
Don't forget that you are starting with a blank canvas. Like art, there are a few basic rules that you should follow, but in the end beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
Be creative. Make your garden an extension to your home. A 'room' under the stars!
About The Author
Carolyn and Laurence James own The Light Company Direct Ltd, an independent, family run business, based in the heart of the Cotswolds. The company offers a superb range of distinctive and stylish lighting for homes and commercial establishments via mail order and the Internet. Carolyn and Laurence have selected lighting that represents the very best in design and craftsmanship. They have developed close links with key manufacturers throughout Europe and are able to offer customers many designs that are rarely seen in the UK.
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Fuchsia (named after Leonhard Fuchs, a 16th century German botanist) is a genus of over 100 species of shrubs and small trees. Although there are four New Zealand native species (colensoi, excorticata, perscandens and procumbens) and one from Tahiti, the vast bulk of the genus occurs in Central and South America.
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Teak Furniture: The Premier Outdoor Furniture
When selecting furniture for their outdoor spaces, many people purchase pieces made with teak, a hard strong durable golden-brown wood, which is both resistant to the elements and requires little maintenance.
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Planting Roses In Your Garden
Roses are an old standby for any garden and one of the worlds favorite flowers. There are over 5,000 varieties of roses in the United States and they can be used to enhance your garden in many ways - as creepers, shrubs, vines, climbers, hedges or just as beds of pure colour.
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5 Most Popular Flowers for Your Garden
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CO2 for Free
We've all heard that there is no such thing as a 'free lunch'; well the process described in this article may be as close to one as you get. Most of us already know the benefits of CO2 enrichment for photosynthesis. To maximize indoor growing and greenhouse potential, CO2 is supplemented to maintain an approximate level of 1500 ppm, this can require frequent trips to an industrial gas supplier and/or a lot of propane or natural gas use, and related costs. It is ironic that many indoor farmers are exhausting CO2 to the outdoors from home heaters and hot water heaters while simultaneously releasing or generating CO2 for an indoor grow room or a greenhouse.
How To Prune Your Roses For Stunning Results
Pruning and deadheading are essential to proper rose care. Alas, there are nearly as many opinions about how and when to prune as there are roses in need of pruning.
The Meanings Behind the Colors of Roses
Roses are a sign of love and friendship and by giving someone a rose you are telling them how truly special they are. There are a number of colors of roses available and each one represents a different meaning to the receiver. If you are looking to purchase roses for that special someone, but aren't quite sure which color would best suit your relationship, keep reading to find out what each color represents.
Environmentally Safe Ways to Remove Weeds
There is a lot of concern about herbicides and what they are doing to our environment. Large amounts of chemicals leech into our groundwater polluting our water supply. Cancers and strange diseases with no apparent cause are being linked to chemicals and pollutants in our environment. So how do we control all those pesky weeds in our perfectly manicured landscapes? I will outline several different ways to eradicate weeds without polluting our environment.
Growing and Preserving Cut Flowers
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Good Tools and Hard Work is What Creates EyeCatching and Functional Gardens
"Gardens are not made by sitting in the shade." -Rudyard Kipling
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