December 2015: Illuminate your garden

December 2015:

Illuminate your garden


“I often think that the night is more alive and more richly colored than the day.”
~Vincent Van Gogh



As the days shorten, it would seem we have less and less time to spend outside in our gardens, and not just because of the cold. Instead of being pushed inside by darkening evenings, add a little twinkling to your own garden! If you’re looking for inspiration, or would just like to head out to the Arboretum on a December evening, come and enjoy a landscape transformed by thousands of lights for Illumination: Tree Lights at The Morton Arboretum! The placement and type of light can create a fresh perspective in a familiar space, something you can do in your own garden at home. Come in to the library to find resources on garden design and lighting and be sure to check out Illumination!


At the Arb

Illumination: Tree Lights at The Morton Arboretum - Come and enjoy the winter season here with us and see trees in a new light! Plan your experience here.



“Gardens are so precious that we want to enjoy them all the time, not just on sunny days in the heat of summer. They have therefore often become an extension of the home, a refuge for relaxing or entertaining, whether in an urban or rural setting - and even after dark. It is important to illuminate these reclaimed spaces. When doing this, it is essential to respect the natural components and soothing atmosphere inherently linked to a garden. The power of artificial light to make spaces look and feel glamorous as well as practical and safe has pushed the demand for a constantly expanding range of products. Originally, spotlights were used, but they were usually unattractive, provided a blinding light, and were so hot that they burnt any nearby plant. Only once beautiful Italian light fittings started to appear did garden designers feel encouraged to integrate lighting more fully into their schemes. With so many possibilities at their disposal, they felt free to look at gardens in dramatic terms and add the seduction of light to bucolic retreats or city hideouts.”
~from Creative Garden Lighting, p.9


Library resources

Creative Garden Lighting by Michele Osborne, 2005
Garden Design ed. by Chris Young, 2009
Outdoor Lighting For Your Home by Stanley Schuler, 1962 (an old resource, great for ideas but the technology is outdated)
Garden Lighting by F. B. Nightingale, 1958 (an old resource, great for ideas but the technology is outdated)
Garden Design Magazine online and in the library


From the web

Landscape Lighting Ideas from the Landscaping Network
How to Illuminate Your Yard With Landscape Lighting from HGTV