How to Arrange Lights in a Pond

Overview

Consider beauty, safety and security when installing pond lighting. All these purposes can be served by careful planning and good lighting design. Adding lighting to water features in a yard or garden is one of the most attractive things you can do in your home landscape. Use a variety of underwater, floating and land lights.

Step 1

Sketch your pond lighting design before installing anything. Think about the wattage you can provide in the pond location and how many and what type of lights you want. Draw yourself a plan to work from so that the number of lights you need are well spaced in the pond.

Step 2

Go out to your pond after dark with a flashlight. Places you thought were good lighting locations in the daytime may not be all that effective and daytime landscaping effects may not show up at night. Try out how light looks coming from several directions and locations by using the flashlight to create different effects.

Step 3

Choose your lighting locations. Depending on the size of your pond and your budget, you may or may not be able to have the whole pond lit with submersed or in-pond lights. Space the lights well apart for maximum landscaping appeal. Leave plenty of extra wires or cables for ease of changing bulbs or light locations later.

Step 4

Apply landscaping design ideas. A mix of different wattages, colors, or types of light may add the touch of originality home landscapers enjoy creating. Try mixing in dry-land lighting that contrasts the underwater lights or fills in dark areas. Or, use both floating and submersed lights for a mix of muted and brilliant light.

Step 5

Check safety of your setup. You will most likely be using a low-voltage transformer to connect to the lights; be sure this is one that is approved for use in wet or underwater locations, even if it is not in a wet location itself.

Step 6

Make adjustments after some time. After you have an arrangement you think will work, leave it there for several days or even weeks. Get used to the way it looks, and try to identify any weaknesses. Make changes after you see what is still needed.

Tips and Warnings

  • Be sure you are aware of voltage when installing lighting in and near your pond. Electricity and water don't always mix well; consult a licensed electrician if you are unsure about your setup. Some pond lighting is meant to be submersed in water, and some is not. Check the manufacturer's specifications before installing any water lighting.

Things You'll Need

  • Additional cables and wiring
  • Transformer approved for wet use
  • Notebook and pencil
  • Waterproof flashlight

References

  • WaterGardenersInternational.com: Pond Lighting
  • JohnDeereLandscapes.com: Lighting
Keywords: installing pond lighting, how to arrange pond lights, pond lighting design

About this Author

Kim Hoyum is a Michigan-based freelance writer. She has been a proofreader, writer, reporter and editor at monthly, weekly and daily publications for five years. She has a Bachelor of Science in writing and minor in journalism from Northern Michigan University.