First Lady Shows Off Her Green Thumb

In a new book out this week, Michelle Obama explores the lessons she's learned while cultivating the First Garden, which has blossomed into a nationwide anti-obesity campaign, writes Marian Burros.
May 30, 2012, 12pm PDT | Jonathan Nettler | @nettsj
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The First Lady's new book, "American Grown: The Story of the White House Kitchen Garden and Gardens Across America," written with Lyric Winik and White House staff members, explores more than just the First Family's gardening achievements and embarrassments, such as growing "perfectly shaped but tasteless cantaloupes."

According to Burros, "'American Grown' is filled with advice for parents, schools, cities and states on how they can help combat the obesity crisis: how to start gardens, get children to like healthy foods and find more opportunities for exercise."

"It also provides recipes and some startling statistics. Lt. Gen. Mark P. Hertling, now the head of Army forces in Europe, writes that in 2004 only 4 percent of men and 10.5 percent of women failed the fitness test that is required to join the military. By 2010, 47.6 percent of men and 54.6 percent of women failed the test."

Proceeds from the book will go to the National Parks Foundation.

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Published on Tuesday, May 29, 2012 in The New York Times
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