Do you know the most common gardening comment I hear? It’s “I just don’t have a green thumb.” My reply is always the same: “Yes you do.” I’m never teasing, either. If one has the desire, our own gardening efforts can make the Royal Gardens at Buckingham Palace look like a paved parking lot in comparison. What’s the secret to the elusive ‘green thumb?’
There are 3 different ways to achieve a green thumb: (giving plants what they need to thrive.)
- Natural instinct. We all know people – parents, grandparents, neighbors, who are just plain good gardeners. Their houseplants thrive, their lawn is immaculate, their flowerbeds are beautiful, and they supply the neighborhood with fresh vegetables from a weed-free garden. They instinctively give plants what’s needed. They don’t give it a second thought.
- Education. We can learn about gardening and plants’ needs by reading, studying, and attending gardening programs. The internet age has put gardening information at our fingertips as never before.
- Experience. A wonderful old gardening adage says “To grow it is to know it.” Add to that the truism “Experience is the best teacher.” Much gardening wisdom can be gained by trial-and-error. We learn-by-doing what works and what doesn’t.
Most green thumbers acquire their knack by a combination of the above. Just beware: green thumbs are contagious, and once yours turns green, there’s no going back!