Moonlighting in Nashville’s Belle Meade Anyone?


The stately trees that grace this driveway for our customer in Belle Meade are perfect for moonlighting

The art of moonlighting is a creative medium in itself. The type of illumination that comes from moonlighting gives off an ethereal effect that cannot be duplicated by any other lighting technique. Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Nashville was recently selected to install moonlighting for an owner in Belle Meade.

The homeowner wanted to illuminate the driveway. Here at Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Nashville we try to avoid having a fixture out in the open because not only does it become a tripping hazard it is susceptible to damage from mowers, aerators, edgers and other machinery. We suggested moonlighting the large trees that grace the driveway, this would effectively light the long driveway and give a soothing, romantic light as well.

The homeowner allowed  John Groce of Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Nashville  to serve as contractor on the job, thus we were able to line up the electrician and the irrigation company to  under the sidewalk. The electrician had already been there previously and ran power to the trees. Sandra Nichols Landscaping was the landscaper on the job and we worked hand in hand during the progression.


Landscape lighting by Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Nashville

Since the electrician had run power from the house to the trees there is a receptacle at the trees. These are done on all 120 volt, line voltage and is a different fixture which uses a ballast to power the bulbs. The bulbs are all ceramic metal halide. Ceramic metal halide are the same type of bulbs used in jewelry and grocery stores and are coveted for their high score on the CRI (color rendering index). The light itself is still low-wattage, at only 39 watts, they still put out an enormous amount of light. As an example of the amount and quality these lights emit, you could hold 30 pieces of blue string in all variations in your hand, and in the noon day sun you could clearly see each variation from string to string. The same clarity is apparent under the moonlighting as well.

We are planning on using the current timer the customer has inside the home to hook in the moonlights for control. We had previously completed the lighting in this customers backyard as well.


Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Nashville worked hand-in-hand with Sandra Nichols Landscaping

Just as we had previously worked with this homeowner before, we enjoyed working with her once again on this moonlighting application. We want to commend Sandra Nichols Landscaping as well. This very stately driveway on this very stately property is now complete with the ambiance of the moonlighting, another job well done!

John Groce - Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Nashville

If you are interested in exploring the possibility of adding moonlighting to your property, or other outdoor lighting applications, contact Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Nashville today at 615-373-0638 or email us @

There is color in light. Some is good and some is not so good. How does LED compare?

CRI - Color Rendering Index

CRI - Color Rendering Index

Have you ever seen a colored light bulb? Have you seen the effect that bulb has on the items it’s illuminating? Halloween is coming up. If you haven’t seen it, try a black or orange light bulb and study how it affects the colors of what it’s illuminating. Inherently, based on the type of light bulb, the light generated from that bulb has a color. In the world of lighting, that color is measured on the Color Rendering Index (CRI).

The peak of the CRI is 100.  To give you an example, noon day sun would best fit this description.  Remember, it’s not the color of the sun.  It is how well the sun’s light reflects the truest color of an object.   According to this index, poor color (where colors do not show) is 79 or lower.  Good color is achieved from 80 – 94 and great color at 95 plus.  The following are common bulbs, their CRI, and their common uses, and average bulb life.

MR16 Quartz Halogen Bulb

MR16 Quartz Halogen Bulb

Quartz Halogen – CRI: 100!

Quartz halogen bulbs have a perfect CRI of 100 and they are long lasting also – anywhere from  2,000 – 4,000 hours. These bulbs are used in the automotive industry as well as in residential indoor and outdoor lighting, and commercial lighting

Ceramic Metal Halide – CRI: 96

At nearly a perfect score, ceramic metal halide has an incredibly long bulb life – 12,000 – 20,000 hours. If you used ceramic metal halide bulbs for your outdoor lighting and ran the lights 12 hours each night, the bulb would last 3-5 years! Ceramic metal halide bulbs are used in residential as well as commercial lighting settings

Metal Halide – CRI: 80+

Although the CRI of metal halide is significantly lower, it still has a phenomenal bulb life of 12,000 – 20,000 hours. Metal halide bulbs are used for both residential and commercial lighting applications.

LED CRI - 50

LED CRI - 50

LED – CRI: 50

So here is where the green bulb comes into play. LED bulb Life is 25,000 – 50,000 hours. The bulb life is what makes it so green. Unfortunately with a lower CRI, the lighting effect does not reflect the truest color of the object it’s illuminating.

I am in full agreement that energy savings is a good thing.  However, considering color, I’m not ready to anoint LED king just yet.  To understand the importance of color, we first need to understand how it is gauged.  The CRI or Color Rendering Index measures how well a light source emits a broad, complete spectrum of visible color.  In laymen terms, how light reflects off of a source.