A huge victory for locavores and advocates of organic food was announced yesterday, in the form of a White House victory garden. The Obamas are going to plant an organic vegetable garden on the White House Lawn.
The NY Times reported yesterday:
On Friday, Michelle Obama will begin digging up a patch of White House lawn to plant a vegetable garden, the first since Eleanor Roosevelt’s victory garden in World War II. There will be no beets (the president doesn’t like them) but arugula will make the cut.
While the organic garden will provide food for the first family’s meals and formal dinners, its most important role, Mrs. Obama said, will be to educate children about healthful, locally grown fruit and vegetables at time when obesity has become a national concern.
Any overflow of food from the garden will be donated to local food pantries. They are even going to keep bees for honey.
What’s most exciting to me about this news is that this happened because of extensive lobbying from everyday people using online tools like Facebook, YouTube, Ning, and Twitter. Thanks to Kitchen Gardeners International, a Maine-based 501c3 nonprofit network of 10,000 gardeners from 100 countries and their Eat the View campaign launched in February 2008. Eat the View is a campaign to plant high-impact food gardens in high-profile places.
Thank you, Michelle and Barack Obama, for listening to the people and taking action. And thanks to everyone who joined the cause on Facebook, signed the petition, forwarded YouTube videos, and emailed blogged about it. Our voices do matter and we can make a difference.
Let’s hope this garden inspires many other people out there to get out in the backyard and start growing food.
Join me in taking action! I’m going to go pick up some tomato and basil starters this weekend, and get some seeds in the ground.
If you don’t have a garden or room for a garden on your lawn, you can always start some plants in pots on a patio. My friend Annie started this awesome container garden in the common area of her apartment building. You could also join or start a local community garden or find some neighbors who want to do “yardsharing”. For to find or create a local yardsharing group, visit the Hyperlocavore blog.
Yes we can!
Photo credit: Eat the View and NY Times