Much to the elation of environmentalists and foodies everywhere, Michelle Obama will today be breaking ground on a new White House vegetable garden! The plot, which will be located on the South Lawn, will supply the White House kitchen. The First Lady will work with students from Bancroft Elementary School in the District of Columbia — who will help plant the fruits, vegetables and herbs in the coming weeks and harvest the crops later in the year.
“A garden like this is one of those small gestures that is powerfully symbolic,” Michael Pollan, author of Omnivores Dilemma told ABC News. “At a time of economic crisis, a garden can provide a surprisingly large amount of fresh, healthy produce,” Pollan said. “But just as important, it teaches important habits of mind — helping people to reconnect with their food, eat more healthily on a budget and recognize that we’re less dependent on the industrial food chain, and cheap fossil fuel, than we assume.”
Even though the White House has grown herbs and had a small rooftop garden, this will be the first true garden on the actual grounds in many decades. “It just tells you that this country cares about people’s good health and about the care of the land,” California chef Alice Waters said. “To have this sort of ‘victory’ garden, this message goes out that everyone can grow a garden and have free food.”
Go White House! Next on our wish list: solar panels! Bring ‘em back!