Today is the day that Alice Waters and other Slow Food supporters have been waiting for: the Obamas will begin planting a garden on the White House lawn, the first such victory garden to be created since the one Eleanor Roosevelt planted during World War II.
The garden, which will be overseen by Sam Kass, the Obamas' former private chef from Chicago, will provide food for the first family's meals and formal dinners. White House executive chef Cristeta Comerford will write menus based on what's available in the garden.
According to First Lady Michelle Obama, the biggest reason for growing a garden is to educate children about the benefits of growing fresh produce locally. She said:
There’s nothing really cooler than coming to the White House and harvesting some of the vegetables and being in the kitchen with Cris and Sam and Bill, and cutting and cooking and actually experiencing the joys of your work.
The first lady, who will dig up soil for the 1,100-square-foot plot of land with fifth graders from a local elementary school, has stressed the significance of healthful eating ever since entering the White House. Last month, she opened up the White House kitchen for a press tour, and recently spoke about the importance of fresh, local eating.
Advocates of farm-to-table eating have been campaigning for a White House edible garden for months now, and there is little doubt that many eat-local proponents consider this to be a huge step in the right direction. To see what fruits and vegetables will be in the White House garden,
- Black kale
- Red romaine
- Green oak leaf
- Butterhead lettuce
- Red leaf lettuce
- Hot peppers
- Thai basil
- Bees, for honey
What do you think of the project? What would you plant if you were Michelle Obama?