A NEW KIND OF VICTORY GARDEN
During the time I was at the White House, we maintained a small rooftop garden so the Presidents and their families could have the benefit of fresh produce. This last Friday it was announced that the Obamas have cleared part of the White House lawn to plant a full fledged vegetable garden. In the New York Times opinion column posted online, "Washington's Not-So-Secret Garden." Click on the link here. This is my entry on the NYT discussionblog in regards to the new garden:
The decision by the first family to have a vegetable garden planted at the White House is a welcome and overdue idea.
Besides being something that I’m sure the “foodie” community have been advocating for some time, a vegetable garden is a great source of wonderful and healthy produce for both the Obamas’ personal use and for the “nation’s table” at state and official events.
The garden will also be a fun and educational place for Sasha and Malia to work and play in with their parents and their grandmother.
It’s odd that this is the first vegetable garden in the White House since Eleanor Roosevelt’s victory garden during World War II. But in a way, it makes sense: Michelle Obama’s garden is a victory garden of a new era — one that champions responsible and frugal lifestyle choices in the face of some fairly daunting economic and global challenges and serves as an learning tool for people who are inexperienced in nutrition and agriculture. It raises the bar for all of America’s homes when it comes to using and supporting local and delicious foods.
As a former White House chef, I’m a little envious of the current chef’s cool new toy!