Monday, March 23, 2009

Congressional Support for the White House Vegetable Garden

First Lady in the White House garden. Photo: The White House

The South Lawn of the White House. Photo: Stockxpert

First Lady Michelle Obama and local school children broke ground for the South Lawn garden on March 20, and the project has received widespread public support. A surge of interest in kitchen gardens has swept the country this winter, with seed companies running out of popular vegetable varieties. The current White House garden plan incorporates vegetables, edible and ornamental flowers, and herbs.

Senators and Representatives have formed ad hoc, bipartisan committees to assist with specific aspects of the garden, and to explore future additions. The initial committee assignments are:

Summer vegetables
Rep. Melissa Bean (D-IL)

Winter vegetables
Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-ME)

Rep. Bill Posey (R-FL)

Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC)

Rep. Marion Berry (D-AK)
Rep. Roscoe Bartlett (R-MD)
Rep. Ander Crenshaw (R-FL)
Rep. Joe Pitts (R-PA)

Pest control
Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-NC)
Rep. Phil Hare (D-IL)
Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D-OH)
Rep. Louise Slaughter (R-NY)

Subcommittee on beneficial insects for pest control
Sen. Jim Webb (D-VA)

Subcommittee on use of ducks for pest control
Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT)
Sen. Robert Byrd (D-WV)

Rep. Lacy Clay (D-MO)

Organic practices
Rep. Al Green (D-TX)

Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA)

The committee members denied they were jumping on the bandwagon of a popular program, and insisted they had been eating fresh fruits and vegetables with their constituents for many years.

© Daffodil Planter 2009. All rights reserved.

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Jan (Thanks For 2 Day) said...

Living in northern VA, I have been seeing this and reading this on the news...and I think it's terrific. Yes, it is kind of a popular political bandwagon for many, I do believe. I also believe it's wonderful that it's happened, finally! I really hope it's successful- especially for the donations to food pantries, but also for the role model it provides for others to follow in its path:-)

Daffodil Planter said...

Jan, I agree, a great role model of a garden. Now this particular article is my joke on the subject--but we'll see if Congress really does get involved.

DirtDigger (Tessa) said...

Wow! All those committees for one garden! I wish I had that kind of help :). I think this is such a great idea (wise move too for the new pres. ;) Thanks for keeping us updated!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the chuckle this morning - you had me going until I started reading the list of Congresspeople's names involved!

Daffodil Planter said...

Tessa, I'd like Sen. Burr's committee to help with the weeds over here!

Welcome Sharon, So glad that you kept on reading!

Town Mouse said...

Truly bipartisan, as well. Just unfortunate that none of the Green Party members ever makes it in this country...But maybe they'd be called Carr or Stone.

VW said...

** Chuckle **
My last name is Woolley, so I guess I'd be on the committee for using sheep for pest control :-)

Daffodil Planter said...

TM, At least now we know to vote for candidates based only on the humor values of their last names ;-)

VW, Oh, hadn't you heard? There is talk of bringing sheep back to mow/graze the White House lawns. I think the last were with T Roosevelt. So you'd have to be in charge of them.

Karen - An Artist's Garden said...

Very good, very amusing

Joyce said...

Have you thought about submitti g to SNL? Thanks for a good laugh. (Did I miss Rep. Boxer? She could head up the packing of food to the schools!

Ginger said...

This is so hilarious!!

mss @ Zanthan Gardens said...

You had me going there until I read the names. It would be great, though, if Congress did spend some time in the veggie garden. It might help them get a little more "down to earth".

Daffodil Planter said...

Karen, Glad you had a laugh in Wales over this.

Welcome Joyce! (hand hitting my head) PERFECT job for Barbara Boxer! Thanks!

Ginger, Making a lawyer laugh is always fun.

Welcome Zanthan! Hey I like the garden glove letter to Michelle Obama on your blog. I've added you to the Southern blog roll here. Your book list is terrific too.

Daffodil Planter said...

From my friend Geoffrey:

"Perhaps we could make good use of GHW and W Bush who, if lined up nicely, could serve as a hedgerow for the new administration's vegetable garden ...."

Victor said...

I have to admit I was a little slow on the uptake. I was over halfway through the committees before I realized that it was really creative and well written. Wish I had your gift.

Daffodil Planter said...

Welcome Victor! What a nice compliment, and from a real live nurseryman--thank you!

Daffodil Planter said...

From my friend AJP:

You are too punny, honey!
Basil Rathbunny

Anonymous said...

While you have been wasting time checking up on the new administration's approach to environment and sustainability issues, I've been focusing on the important stuff. That's right, how does Michelle Obama keep her arms so toned?

According to my sources (the newspaper), it's three 90 minute workouts a week with a personal trainer. Boring! As no other garden blogger I know who writes about the white house has your relaxed approach to truthfulness, I think if you start a rumor it's gardening that has made Michelle so buff, you'd get a lot of people to hop on the gardening bandwagon. (Don't worry about getting in trouble, "truthiness" is in vogue right now.)

Anonymous said...

I admit it took me a minute to catch on. The only name I recognize is Orin Hatch but I'm assuming these are real people/US representatives. Have you thought about submitting this to Reader's Digest? They're always looking for witty prose and this definitely qualifies. And they PAY.

Rob (ourfrenchgarden) said...

I suppose you could have a Van Trapp in pest control.

They should rename the place the Greenhouse


Anonymous said...

I will send this along to Burr and Foxx from NC. They will like it and get a good chuckle. Well written and funny.

Frances said...

HA DF, I especially liked the duck control for pests! Even though you are being funny, we are thrilled for the publicity that will be given to gardening in general and food raising in particular. I get a newsletter from a seed company that thinks I am a professional grower for some reason, and all they are talking about it veggies and how to sell them to the public. Even Lowe's has many more early veggies to choose from on the shelves now, including ruby chard, winterbor kale and bok choy, this is new. Hooray for food growing, in whatever form it takes.

Daffodil Planter said...

Susan, Thank you for casting aspersions on my veracity!

Grace, Glad you liked the spoof!

Rob, If only those Von Trapps weren't busy running their inn in New England!

FlowerGardenGirl, Thanks for sending to your politcians!

Frances, The duck men, Orrin Hatch and Bob Byrd are my favorite subcommittee too!

SueB (E) said...

I thought this must be from the Onion! I love your sense of humor - thanks for the laugh. Here in Upstate New York we are thankful for every crocus we spot in bloom. I forced some branches of magnolia, didn't think it was working for a week, and then, one after another, beautiful blossoms, and now, a week later, the leaves are even coming on! I'm on a neighborhood forsythia watch - they look tempted... Great Blog Ms. Planter...

Heather said...

Thanks for adding my blog to your blog roll! I am honored.

ryan said...

I'm not sure what he would do, but it seems like Henry Waxman should have some sort of application or usefulness.

David said...

Thanks for a great post!
That picture of Michele Obama and company raking the garden bed drives me crazy- I just want to email her info on how to remove a lawn!

Daffodil Planter said...

Welcome SueB! Thanks for laughing. Your indoor blooms sound so refreshing. The only snow left here are the chunks my grandkids have stored in our freezer.

Heather, Glad to have you and the goats here.

Welcome Ryan! You're absolutely right; Henry Waxman cries out to be on one of these committees. Maybe he could work with Barbara Boxer on the committee that Joyce suggested--wrapping and packing the vegetables for schools?

David, Don't worry, just a photo op with the rakes, and the real garden staff were seen doing serious digging a few hours later. For anyone reading this, though, David's link will inspire you to Get Rid of Your Lawn. At least part of it.

Anonymous said...

I've just got to know how much time you spent on this! Great post!

Daffodil Planter said...

Welcome Leave Me Alone I'm Digging! Delighted to have you here and hope you approve of my current Henry Mitchell quote.