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- an exceptional aptitude for gardening or for growing plants successfully: Houseplants provide much pleasure for the city dweller with a green thumb.
Origin of green thumb
First recorded in 1940–45Related formsgreen-thumbed, adjectivegreen-thumb·er, noun
Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018British Dictionary definitions for green thumb
- US and Canadian considerable talent or ability to grow plantsAlso called (in Britain and certain other countries): green fingers
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
A knack for growing plants and keeping them healthy: “All my houseplants are in sorry shape; it's clear I don't have a green thumb.”
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Idioms and Phrases with green thumb
A knack for making plants grow well, as in Just look at Louise's plants—she really has a green thumb. This term presumably alludes to the stained fingers of an avid gardener. [First half of 1900s]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.