Friday, September 4, 2015

Treehugger digs the White House garden

Ever since Barack Obama was inaugurated, and even before, there's been a movement afoot to pressure the new prez to install an organic garden on the grounds of the White House. Today Michelle Obama personally got out the shovel and broke ground on just such a garden on the South Lawn.

Treehugger digs the White House garden

Michelle Obama breaks ground - again. (AP Photo/Ron Edmonds)
Michelle Obama breaks ground - again. (AP Photo/Ron Edmonds) AP

Ever since Barack Obama was inaugurated, and even before, there's been a movement afoot to pressure the new prez to install an organic garden on the grounds of the White House. Today Michelle Obama personally got out the shovel and broke ground on just such a garden on the South Lawn.

First of all, Earth to Philly must take a moment out to congratulate the President and First Lady for jumping on this, and the first day of spring is the perfect occasion to do so (even if, here in Philly, some of us awoke to a dusting of snow on the ground). This, the first presidential garden since World War II, will help garner more visibility and credibility for fresh fruits and vegetables in the mind of the public - something that's been sorely lacking among the past few presidents - as well as driving home the point that we can all keep better connected to our food and that many of us could produce more of it ourselves.

But there's also been a lot of debate about what the Obamas should grow in the garden and why and how. The best analysis of this that I have seen is from that reliable standby, Treehugger, where Meaghan O'Neill gets down to specifics such as swapping out the water-hogging lettuce in favor of cabbage, and provides many links to resources that, whether or not the Obamas avail themselves of them, will be handy to anyone who wants to start gardening.

Once they get the South Lawn garden under way, though, watch for Earth to Philly's campaign pressuring the President to start gardening on the walls of the White House!

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About this blog
Earth to Philly is a weblog focusing on earth-conscious technology, trends and ideas, from a Daily News perspective. We look at the "green" aspects of your home, business, food, transportation, style, policy, gadgets and artwork. If you have a Philly-related story, Click here to let us know about it!

The experts at Philadelphia's Energy Coordinating Agency answer your energy questions in our regular feature Stay Warm, Stay Green. Send in your question or questions to

Look for Jenice Armstrong to supply tips on green living as well as occasional columns on the subject of Green. She also blogs at Hey Jen.

Becky Batcha stays tuned for the here-and-now practical side of conservation, alternative energy, organic foods, etc. - stuff you can do at home now. Plus odds and ends.

Laurie Conrad recycles from her ever-growing e-mailbag to pass along the latest travel deals, fashion statements, household strategies, gadgets, cool local events and other nuggets of interest to those who appreciate a clean, green world.

Vance Lehmkuhl looks at topics like eco-conscious eating, public transportation and fuel-efficient driving from his perspective as a vegetarian, a daily SEPTA bus rider and a hybrid driver, as well as noting the occasional wacky trend or product. Contact Vance with your 'green' news.

Ronnie Polaneczky sees the green movement through the eyes of her 12-year-old daughter, who calls her on every scrap of paper or glass bottle that Ronnie neglects to toss into the house recycling bins. Ronnie will blog about new or unexpected ways to go green. She also blogs at So, What Happened Was...

Sandra Shea and the DN editorial board opine on any green-related legislation or policy. And we'll pass along some of the opeds on the subject that people send us.

Jonathan Takiff will be blogging mainly about consumer electronics - those things that we love to use and that suck too much energy. He'll spotlight green-conscious gizmos made in a responsible fashion, both in terms of materials used and the energy it takes to run them.

Signe Wilkinson draws the comic strip Family Tree, which follows the Tree family as they try to live green in the face of nattering neighbors, plastic-wrapped consumer products, and the primal teenage urge to spend vast quantities of money on hair care products of dubious organic quality.

In addition to these updates from our newsroom bloggers, watch for an occasional feature, Dumpster Diver Dispatches, from Philadelphia's original "green" community of artists, the Dumpster Divers. You'll learn about creative ways to reuse and recycle while you reduce, and about the artists who are making little masterpieces from what others throw out.

  • Dispatch #1: Margaret Giancola's rugs from plastic bags
  • Dispatch #2: Dumpster Divers in City Hall (Art in City Hall series)
  • Dispatch #3: Wild wood, New Jersey
  • Dispatch #4: Dumpster Divers award winners announced
  • Dispatch #5: From sweaters to colorful cuddling
  • Dispatch #6: Green artists retake South Street Sunday
  • Dispatch #7: Isaiah Zagar: He's a Magic (Gardens) Man

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