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"Every child should have mud pies, grasshoppers, waterbugs, tadpoles, frogs & turtles, elderberries, wild strawberries, acorns, hickory nuts, trees to climb, animals to pet, hayfields, pine cones, rocks to roll, sand, snakes, huckleberries and hornets – and any child who has been deprived of these has been deprived of the best part of his education." -Luther Burbank 1849 - 1926
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The White House Backyard Garden - Fantastic!

First Lady Michelle Obama and two dozen local students broke ground on the White House Kitchen Garden on the South Lawn of the White House on March 20, 2009. What an inspiring move back toward sustainability and a productive home!

White House Garden with Michelle Obama
(Photo by The White House / Joyce N. Boghosian) The students who helped break ground will be involved in the garden as it develops and grows, producing fresh, healthy vegetables to be cooked in the White House Kitchen and given to Miriam's Kitchen, which serves the homeless in Washington, DC.

Take a look at this garden -- it is not a tiny undertaking! I hope the Obama girls and their parents will spend many hours of discovery of the wildlife that will be attracted by a real garden. And I hope that the White House staff knows that vegetable gardens in the middle of manicured lawns need to be careful about fertilizers and pesticides that can accumulate over the years.

There is lots to learn with a new garden!

This is just the first of many new gardens to be established by federal government departments and divisions -- including the USDA! Urban gardening has come back. Have you started yours yet? White House Garden with Michelle Obama
The list of plants includes:

  • Red Romaine Lettuce,
  • Green Oakleaf Lettuce,
  • Sugar Snap Peas,
  • Spinach,
  • Broccoli,
  • Butterhead Lettuce,
  • Redleaf Lettuce,
  • Radishes,
  • Shallotd and Shell Peas,
  • Onions,
  • Chard,
  • Perennial Herbs,
  • Kale and Collards,
  • Carrots and
  • Annual herbs,
  • Mint and
  • something mysterious in raised beds!