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2022 Landscape Outdoor Lighting Trends

Outdoor living is one trend that has caught on fast, and it looks like it's here to stay.


With more and more people increasing their time spent outdoors, here are nine outdoor lighting trends to look forward to in 2022. 

1.Smart Lighting

The word 'smart' in technology is actually an acronym `SMART' which expands to 'Self-Monitoring, Analysis and Reporting Technology. This applies to all types of smart accessories.

Smart lighting uses wireless transmission to send and receive signals through which you can control the lighting fixtures using a remote, an app on your smartphone, or a smart home accessory.

Apart from the convenience of easy access, these lighting fixtures have other benefits like:

  • They are easily dimmable.
  • Their brightness can be adjusted according to the mood.
  • They change colors.
  • They last longer and are energy efficient.

Some smart lighting fixtures also come with motion sensors and lighting sensors. This means that the lights will automatically turn on when they detect movement close by and adjust their brightness depending on the amount of light already available in the location. This will further increase their energy efficiency.

2. Path Lighting with Solar Lamps

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Most of us have paths in our landscapes for easy navigation. To make them accessible at night, we need path lighting that is both visually appealing and functional. Solar lamps fit into both of those categories.

Solar lamps are designed such that small panels of solar cells absorb energy from the sunlight during the day and use this energy to light up your paths at night. They need to be placed where they can get adequate sunlight to run through the night. Lighting up all your paths at night will prevent trip-and-fall accidents and increase the overall safety of your landscape. They are eco-friendly and easy to maintain as they don't need wires for connection. 

3. Staircase Lighting

If you have outdoor staircases or steps, they also need to be lit up at night to ensure no one trips over the steps while climbing up or down. These lights should be placed at the ends of the steps and should preferably be in-ground for safety purposes. If a light fixture sticks out of the step surface, this can cause accidents. 

LED strip lighting is a great option for staircase lighting as it provides the illumination required while remaining hidden and out of the way. Some LED lights also provide you with the option of changing their brightness and colors.

4. Landscape Downlighting

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Downlights are used to illuminate spaces from above. These fixtures are generally mounted high on trunks or branches of trees to provide light to the area below. They have coverings on their sides to prevent glare, thus reducing light pollution by maintaining the normal dimness of the nighttime. Downlights can be used to light up pathways, driveways, patios, decks, flowerbeds, etc. For outdoor seating, downlights are installed under the benches to provide illumination for easy navigation and safety.

5. Tree Lighting

Do you have trees on your lawn that you want to highlight? Accent lighting for trees is what you're looking for. If it is a smaller-sized tree, you can use uplighting to illuminate the tree from below. This will give the tree a dramatic effect and add texture to your landscape.

If you want to light the entire tree, you can use small floodlights on its branches and a separate bulb on the trunk to highlight it. If your landscape covers a larger area and has multiple trees, you can install downlights on all of them to serve the dual purpose of highlighting the tree as well as the area around it. 

6. Hardscape Lighting

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Hardscape lighting uses low profile light fixtures similar to downlights to light the hardscape areas of your landscape like pathways, stairs, patios, retaining walls, brick edging, small stone ornaments, outdoor fireplaces, etc. This type of lighting enhances the natural stone structure and displays it beautifully even when there is no

 natural light. Hardscape lighting keeps your landscape functional at nighttime and makes spending time outdoors more comfortable and enjoyable. 

7. Sconces

Sconces are light fixtures that are mounted on the wall. Typically, their light goes upward and outward. The origin of sconces can be traced back to the pre-modern age when people mounted candles and torches on the walls to illuminate dark passageways. And this type of lighting is one of the hottest trends today, where electric lights have replaced the traditional torches and are mounted on the walls to provide soft lighting. They can be installed on the exterior walls of the house to light up the entire structure with subtle illumination that is not harsh on the eyes at night. You can also place them at your front door on eye level to light up your entryway with stylish lighting. Sconces generally come in metal (brass and copper), glass, ceramic, crystal and plastic finishes. This variety allows you to choose the material that fits your aesthetic the best.

8. Fairy Lights

Fairy lights are string lights where small bulbs are placed equidistantly on the wire. String lights are generally associated with the holiday season, but they can be used at any time of the year to add a special feel to your outdoor space. You can hang fairy lights from the branches of a tree to light up the space below while giving the area a magical feel, just like their name suggests. If you have bushes as a fence, you can gently wrap these lights around the entire row to surround the space with a soft glow. Apart from the traditional soft yellow lights, they also come in various colors with different light-up timings and patterns. Therefore, you can make your landscape dynamic and lively using fairy lights.

9. Water Lights

Water features are great additions to any size of the landscape and provide a tranquil atmosphere where the sound of flowing water drowns out the loud noises of city life. So how can you enjoy this peaceful setting even at night? By lighting up your water feature, of course! There are generally two kinds of techniques used to light up a water feature:

  • Moonlighting: In this type of lighting, downlights are placed on a high post or on a tree to light up the water feature from above in a way that resembles moonlight.
  • Underwater Lights: These are waterproof light fixtures that are placed under the water surface to light up the water feature from inside and create a whimsical mood.

If you are planning on using submerged lighting for your water feature, you should make sure that the water is always clear and not murky because this will affect the visuals. Another point to consider is the point of view: the lights should be placed so that they don't cause a harsh glare when looked at from the street or through your window.


As we continue to embrace more outdoor living in 2022, lighting up our landscape in the right way becomes more essential than ever before. The lighting trends that we have mentioned above will help you stay on top of the lighting styles while also making your outdoor space safe and comfortable to spend time in after sunset.

If you want to install outdoor lighting fixtures, Down To Earth Landscape & Irrigation has the expertise and the equipment to handle all your requirements. Contact us or fill out an Estimate Request to learn more about our outdoor lighting packages and pricing.