Growing a Green Thumb

I don’t have a green thumb. At least that’s what I’ve always assumed. But the truth is I’ve never really tried. No A for effort here. All the house plants I’ve killed can be pretty much chalked up to deprivation of a most basic need: water. And then there was the once-leafy-green casualty my college roommates and I actually nourished with day-old beer.

Outdoor gardening is an even more daunting task. The sun, the soil, the critters, the weeds. I’ve had many excuses over the years — no yard, no time, can only have so many warm-weather hobbies (and boating, in my book, trumps all). But since buying a house with a plenty big enough yard, I actually have a need, and a desire, to learn. My list of outdoor improvements is long, and growing: I want hydrangeas, a small flowering tree, window boxes overflowing with coleus and a kitchen garden brimming with veggies and herbs. Oh, and a front lawn that’s actually green.

But where does a neophyte begin to get her hands dirty? It turns out in Little Compton. At Peckham’s Greenhouse, where they are offering a spring lecture series to inspire the uninitiated and help the hard-core. The classes cover all sorts of topics, meet on Sundays from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., and are free. Yes, free, so there’s truly no excuse for me not to go. Peckham’s Greenhouse, 200 West main Rd., Little Compton, 635-4775,

Here’s the schedule:

March 29: Organic lawn and garden care

April 5: Vegetable gardening

April 19: Shrub and perennial gardening (roses, hydrangeas, peonies, etc.)

April 26: Container gardening

May 3: Using native plants (sustainable gardening)