The unusual sight of America’s First Lady with a garden fork in her hand made the news when it was announced that the Obama family would have and tend their very own kitchen garden. The organic plot is the first since Eleanor Roosevelt planted a “Victory Garden” in front of the White House in 1943.
Michelle Obama is hoping that millions of Americans will be inspired to plant their own vegetable gardens, just as they were 65 years ago in World War II. The 1,100 square foot plot will be planted with veg. like peppers, carrots and spinach. Beetroot was apparently orginally vetoed by Barack Obama, but was then allowed in with the proviso that he would not have to eat it.
The Obama family will help tend the garden aided by Washington primary school children and of course a few members of White House grounds staff. The plot, which cost around $200, has been hailed as a political move on Michelle Obama’s part. She said: “My hope is that through children they will begin to educate their families and that will, in turn, begin to educate our communities.”
Critics have said that urging people to plant a vegetable garden is not going to make a difference because it is an expensive and elitist option, but undoubtedly the most expensive part of the deal is finding both a plot and some time. Allotments in London can have long waiting lists. In terms of set up and maintenance costs, however, kitchen gardens can be very cost effective and the results are always worth it.