My reality: my backyard is for me and my family and my guests, the front yard is for my neighbors. My front yard is very nice, but I put my time, money and effort into the backyard. Plus, my front yard is never very dark because of the street lights. Expensive lighting just wouldn't have the same impact.
So I'm trying to figure out what to do with my raised wall (15" tall ). There are canna lilies planted behind the wall. I feel like this area will need lighting, but I'm not sure what to do here. Any suggestions?
This is the right side of the wall. So far I can see a spots on the dried palm tree & needle palm and a couple path lights.
This is left of the wall. I can see a couple path lights and spots on the dried palm tree & huge yucca.
Up-lights! You plant whatever is right for your climate and soil that will grow 6' or more, to hide the fence. Ideally green all year long, that don't shed much into the pool. Then you put up-lights just behind the wall, and all along that planter, pointed toward the fence*, up through the leaves of the plants. When the plants fill in, that'll make an amazing back drop to the entire pool, and hide the fence to boot. I use a combination of up-lights and walkway lights to light both the trees and the low shrubs and ground cover. If you plot them right, they don't shine in your eyes. The only downside of the walkway lights is that they can reflect in the pool and cause some glare. Up-lights don't do that. So you kinda have to play with the locations of the light until you get them just right (another reason to leave a good amount of slack in each wire). And VOLT up-lights can handle the direct rain. They have some heavy-duty waterproofing (multiple o-rings).
By the way, some of the VOLTs have adjustable coverage. I know the walkway lights do, so you can control to some extent the circumference of the glow.
It might be tempting to use a vine that will crawl the fence, and cover it completely. I wouldn't do that, though. That usually doesn't end well for the fence. If there's room, leave yourself a small walkway between fence and plants, so that you can maintain both. If you do want to use a vine, hang them on a set of wires on their own posts, aways from the fence. That'll give you the same effect without compromising the fence itself.
*Plot the lights such that you can shine them at an angle, slightly across the face of the plants. If you point the lights perpendicular to the fence, you'll get less coverage and hotspots. If you angle the lights a bit, you'll get better coverage: just enough to increase the glow, but not enough for the light bulbs to shine in your eyes.
You can angle them mirrored: lefties go left, righties go right. Or if you sit on one end of the pool or the other, you can angle them all away from that sitting area. The lights shining at an angle will add visual interest to the design, not everything has to be "straight and even" to be beautiful.
Dirk, I'd like to try to illuminate the raised wall and the 2 scuppers. Our arbor is about 20 ft away. I was thinking of mounting a spot or flood 9 ft high on the arbor and angling it down to shine on the wall. What do you think?