Color Temp and Trees

Discussion in 'Landscape Lighting' started by steveparrott, May 10, 2013.

  1. steveparrott

    steveparrott LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,276

    Now that lighting designers have color temp options, I'd like to hear opinions on the use of various color temps to illuminte plant material.

    I saw one ad that shows renderings of a deciduous tree lit differently in each of the four seasons. The renderings were terrible, but the concept is interesting.

    The captions of these images suggest the following:
    • Winter (no leaves - snow on branches): 6,000K
    • Spring (blossoms - young leaves): 4,000K
    • Summer (full leaves - very green): 3,000K
    • Fall (yellow and red leaves): 2,100K

    The implication is that plant material with more blues and greens - need bluer light; more reds and yellows need warmer light. My own observation is that this approach does make these primary colors "pop", but if used in the vicinity of other CCT lamps, the "popped" colors seem artificial and call too much attention to the light. Just my opinion.

    What do you think?
  2. bcg

    bcg LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Tx
    Messages: 1,865

    I'm with you, Steve. I think it does start to look unnatural. My preference is to have the same color temperature for all the uplighting and a cooler color for the moonlighting (like 2700 - 2900 for up and 4000 - 5000 for down). I realize that colored lenses can make certain colors "pop" more but it isn't my preference.

    I also can't imagine what a hassle it would be to change color filters or lamps on all of my jobs every 3 months to match the season...
  3. Lite4

    Lite4 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,187

    I have used blue lenses for years when illuminating spruce or other conifers to make them pop. 3000k seems to wash out the color on these a bit. I love the color temp options now with LED.

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