This is the VOA Special English Agriculture Report.
this month, Michelle Obama and twenty-three schoolchildren helped prepare the
ground for an organic vegetable garden on the South Lawn of the White House.
The first lady showed the young gardeners how to turn the soil for the one
hundred square meter garden.
The students from nearby Bancroft
Elementary School will help grow fifty-five kinds of vegetables, herbs and
berries. They will plant organic
seedlings in a few weeks. The White
House will provide organic fertilizer for the garden. Crops will include lettuce, spinach, broccoli,
peas, onions and berries. Missus Obama
said two beehives will provide honey. The whole Obama family, including the
president, will pull weeds in the garden. The total cost of the seedlings and fertilizer
is two hundred dollars.
vegetables and fruit will help provide meals for the Obama family, White House workers
and guests. The produce will also go to
a nearby center that provides food for homeless people. Michelle Obama said the
main goal of the garden is to educate children and influence communities to choose
and prepare healthful food.
will be the first on the White House lawn since World War Two. President Franklin Roosevelt's wife Eleanor planted
what was called a "Victory Garden" as part of the war effort in nineteen forty-three.
Eleanor Roosevelt urged all Americans to
grow their own vegetables and fruits. Much
of the nation's farm produce at the time was feeding American soldiers. More recently, President and Missus Clinton
had a small garden. But it was planted
in containers on the roof of the White House.
The White House garden
marks a victory for people like Professor Michael Pollan of the University of
California, Berkeley. The writer and
food expert has worked to increase public education about good food. He said
gardens like the one at the White House help people reconnect with food and eat
a public letter to Mister Obama several months ago, Michael Pollan said a White
House garden would set a revolutionary example of healthful eating and local
farming for the whole country.
And that's the VOA Special English Agriculture Report,
written by Jerilyn Watson. You can learn
more about growing food at our Web site, voaspecialenglish.com. I'm Steve Ember.