That's one way to plant an idea… Michelle Obama invites schoolchildren to White House garden as part of Let's Move campaign



22:30 GMT, 26 March 2012

Michelle Obama hosted the fourth annual spring planting at the White House Kitchen Garden today, with a group of schoolchildren from across the country.

Youngsters from New York, Pennsylvania and North Carolina, as well as local schools, helped plant potatoes, spinach, broccoli, carrots, radishes and onions.

It was the first time children from outside the Washington area have been invited to participate in the event, which forms part of the First Lady's Let's Move initiative.

Lettuce play: Michelle Obama carries a tray of greens ready for planting at teh White House Kitchen Garden

Lettuce play: Michelle Obama carries a tray of greens ready for planting at teh White House Kitchen Garden

Michelle Obama

Helping hands: The First Lady invited schoolchildren from across the country to participate in the event

They were selected based on letters they had written about their own community activities.

Mrs Obama, who was dressed in a coral T-shirt, cropped trousers and plimsolls, told the assembled group this afternoon: 'Your letters were so wonderful, I thought, why not come and see me
at the White House and help me plant my garden'

Explaining the link between Let's Move and the White House Kitchen Garden, she continued: 'The garden is a good way to start the conversation, because vegetables and fruits are a big part of a healthy diet.

Michelle Obama

Michelle Obama

Dress-down Monday: Mrs Obama wore a casual coral-coloured T-shirt, a cardigan and cropped black trousers with plimsolls for her afternoon in the garden

Michelle Obama

High five! Mrs Obama praises a group of Girl Scouts, who were among the youngsters taking part

'And a lot of times when you grow your own vegetables and fruits, they
taste really good. They taste better than a lot of stuff you’ll get in a
grocery store – trust me. My kids have done it. They’re not big fans
of all vegetables, but if they help to work on it they’re much more
excited about trying it out. And we found that with the students here.

Obama was joined by White House Chefs Cris Comerford, Sam Kass and Bill
Yosses, who also helped the children with sowing plants.

It is the first vegetable garden at the executive mansion since Eleanor Roosevelt's Victory Garden.

Michelle Obama

Planting ideas: The White House Kitchen Garden event was part of the First Lady's Let's Move campaign

Next month, Mrs Obama will release a book about the White House Kitchen Garden.

Grown, which will go on sale on April 10, will include advice,
practical gardening ideas, recipes and tips on how to begin a kitchen

Random House, which
is publishing the book, said that the First Lady accepted no advance for
the book and will donate all net or after-tax author proceeds to