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  • Writer's pictureKat Cervoni

The Cultivation, Issue 9

Updated: Oct 21, 2020

July 1, 2020

The Cultivation by Staghorn Living is a weekly newsletter offering expert insight for garden-filled living. Here you'll find ideas and hands-on guidance for everything from planting tricks and patio decor to the tools and tips we treasure.

The fireworks of the garden – Allium christophii's giant flower clusters can span over 8 inches in diameter and offer an explosion of color in the summer garden. Image by Christian Camus courtesy iStock 

Editor's Note

Like so many folks, our holiday celebrations are centered around food, food, and more food. The 4th of July is no exception. What does set it apart, and makes it one of my favorites, is the simplicity behind what we traditionally prepare. There is an ease to grilling, a wonderful fresh-off-the-branch-ness to serving seasonal fruit festooned with not much more than herbs, an indelible delight to drawing an icy cool drink from a great big jug. For this week’s issue, we’re tapping into that summer BBQ energy and connecting the dots between your outdoor space and your next shindig, with everything from drink vessels and our favorite grills to recipes that put all those herbs to work. Wishing you all a safe, fun and happy 4th of July!

Happy planting!


Pour It On

From statement pieces to portable and shatter-proof options, we’ve got you covered with a selection of vessels that make the perfect pour for any occasion.

Nordic Jug by Skagerak from GOODEE

Form and function truly come together in this jug’s sublime Scandi minimalism and creamy white glaze. We can't imagine a better way to serve breakfast OJ or fresh lemonade at lunch.

Acrylic Drink Dispenser from Crate & Barrel

When you love the look of glass, but need something durable (especially outside), acrylic is the way to go. The mason-jar styling adds charm without looking hokey, and the 3-gallon capacity is perfect for a small gathering.

Fluted Acrylic Pitcher from West Elm

This easy-to-handle ribbed pitcher is equal parts workhorse and show pony. We'd definitely go for the matching drinking glasses to make a complete set.

Shear Perfection

For precision cuts and less waste when you're picking herbs, a good pair of shears (or snips) is essential. Any of these three would make a great addition to a gardener's tool kit.

Niwaki Herb Shears

Tiny, lightweight, and ergonomic, this pair of snips, which is modeled on traditional Japanese sewing scissors, is especially useful for delicate herbs such as chives, cilantro, parsley and thyme. (Also, A+ on the gorgeous packaging.)

Garden Scissors with Pouch

This loop-handled pair is ideal for those who prefer the look and feel of traditional scissor handles or want one tool that can tackle both herbs and flowers. The recycled leather carrying pouch is a definite bonus.

Modern Sprout Pruning Shears

Delicate enough for chives yet strong enough for rosemary, this pair of needle-nose snips is a game-changer when it comes to clean cuts. We are especially fond of the mint-green handles.

It's Time to Deadhead Roses

Eager for another flush of rose blossoms? The trick is to deadhead them as soon as you notice the flowers have begun to fade. Do not wait! The faster you deadhead, the faster your shrub can start putting energy into producing new flowers instead of putting that energy – and lots of it – towards going to seed.

Pro Tips:

  • Deadhead as soon as the flowers have faded.

  • Be sure to prune far enough down the branch that it's strong enough to support new growth.

  • Take care to mind the overall shape of the shrub as you deadhead to maintain a good form.

  • Deadhead these perennials for the same blossomy benefits: salvia, echinacea, nepeta, achillea.

The Holy Grill

We've been designing and building outdoor kitchens for years and love seeing how they not only transform a rooftop or backyard garden but also the dynamics of the whole house. Whether you've got the space and funds for a big rig or are looking for a more efficient way to find your inner grillmaster, we're listing our go-to grills for any outdoor space.

Best Built-in Gas Grill: Blaze 4-Burner Grill

This grill is generously but not massively sized (32") and has all the right bells and whistles (interior lights, rotisserie insert, etc.) plus true reliability. We've installed it in numerous outdoor custom kitchen, and our clients always rave. Available via BBQ Guys.

Best Free-Standing Propane Grill: Weber Genesis II

The Weber Genesis II is the ultimate no-nonsense, free-standing propane grill. We're fans of its ease of use and practical features — including wheels, detachable side wings, and interior cabinet storage space. Available at Ace Hardware.

Best Portable Charcoal Grill: Table Top Grill by Eva Solo

Whether you're short on space, or looking for something chic and portable, the Table Top Grill by Eva Solo is the way to go. Highly rated and widely praised for its ability to hold heat, which is essential for good grilling, it comes with a fire-proof porcelain exterior in either white or black. The simple stainless-steel handle means it's easy to carry should you be planning a moveable feast. Available at The Milk Street Store.

In the Kitchen: Dessert Herbs

Right about now is when a lot of us are starting to see the bounty of our herb plantings...and asking the question, “How do I use all of this?” The answer is any or all of these delicious fruit + herb dessert pairings.

Bourbon, Rosemary + Apple Crisp via Food52

With a hefty scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Strawberry, Black Pepper, Balsamic + Basil via My Delicious Blog

Serve this one simply, with a dollop of ice cream, or take a more indulgent route with a combination of whipped cream and shortcake.

Mango with Cilantro + Coconut via Saveur

This sweet and spicy fruit salad is as refreshing as it is surprising.

Lemon Bars with Honey + Fresh Thyme via Grow, Forage, Cook, Ferment

A delicious upgrade to a classic summer treat. Bonus: it's gluten free and paleo friendly.

Grilled Pineapple with Lime + Mint Sauce via This Healthy Table

This recipe is a great way to use all that fragrant mint you've grown.


We hope you enjoyed Issue 9 of The Cultivation.We want to provide content that captivates, educates, and inspires you, so let us know if there's something you'd like us to include next time. Please send your thoughts by emailing us here. Want to catch up on previous issues? Click here to read through all of our prior editions.

See you next week.

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