Outdoor Lighting Principles: Uplighting

February 23, 2018

When it comes to outdoor lighting, there are a myriad of tools and principles in which to achieve a tasteful and dramatic low-voltage landscape lighting system. Of the many tools in the arsenal of a professional landscape lighting design and installation company, like S&M Landscape Lighting, the most powerful has to be uplighting.

Uplights come in many shapes and sizes as well as finishes and styles. The thing to realize here is that not all uplights are created equal.

Bullet-style uplights:

Bullet lights are lights that can be staked in the ground, installed on risers or bracketed onto structures. They typically have a pronounced shroud in order to minimize glare based on the viewing angle. They are also typically very easy to adjust, often only requiring a screwdriver to adjust up to 180 degrees, making it a staple in the landscape lighting arsenal.

Bullet lights are best for adding concentrated beams of light to an area, structure or planting.

In-ground (well lights)

In-ground lights (also known as well lights) can be successfully incorporated in landscape lighting design in several ways. Well lights have interchangeable shrouds / covers to allow them to be a utilitarian light fixture, more than any other fixture. Depending on the design of the system, they can be used in architectural lighting packages, walkway lighting packages, driveway lighting packages and landscape lighting packages, with distinct benefits to each.

Well lights, depending on the shroud, are also the best suited fixture for a wide-angle spread that begins at ground level and evenly distributes light, based on placement. It’s also useful for installation in areas of the lawn that need to be mowed and maintained, as the fixtures are hardy and flush with the lawn.


Micro uplights can be utilized in landscape lighting design in hard to access areas, heavy traffic areas and areas that need to be core-drilled. These pinpoint lights are perfect for columns and certain statues as well.

Do you have any questions about uplighting or are you interested in outdoor and landscape lighting? Feel free to contact us anytime at (908) 369-7791 or by submitting a contact form here.