First Lady Michelle Obama presides over the spring planting of a newly expanded White House kitchen garden on Wednesday afternoon. The expansion -- first revealed in Politics Daily last week --
will add several more rows of beds to the garden, originally planted last year.
The expansion came at the request of Mrs. Obama.
As happened last year, students from local schools will have a hand in tending to the vegetables throughout the growing season. Students from Bancroft in Washington and Hollin Meadows in nearby Alexandria, Va., will attend the planting event. Mrs. Obama visited the Virginia school last November and students from Bancroft helped out in the garden all last year.
Joining Mrs. Obama at 4 p.m. Eastern time will be Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, along with the president of the National Gardening Association.
Also Wednesday, Mrs. Obama will speak at the White House Council on Women and Girls forum on workplace flexibility at 1:15 p.m. Eastern.
According to the White House, "The First Lady will discuss the importance of creating workplace practices that allow America's working men and women to meet the demands of their jobs without sacrificing the needs of their families. The forum will be an opportunity for CEOs, small business owners, labor leaders, and workplace policy experts to share their ideas and strategies for making the workplace more flexible for American workers and families."
The forum, including all five breakout sessions, will be streamed on WhiteHouse.gov/live.
Mrs. Obama's visit to Hollin Meadows on Nov. 18, 2009, foreshadowed her "Let's Move" campaign to reduce childhood obesity, unveiled in February. Here's what she said then:
"I have just been thrilled to be working with Secretary Vilsack; he's been a wonderful partner. As some of you may know, a few weeks ago we hosted an event on the South Lawn where we really emphasized fitness, we talked about nutrition, we had kids from schools all throughout the area -- and their parents -- and really spent time showing how you can create healthy foods that kids enjoy, that are cost effective and easy to do with the current resources that the system provides.
"And we also had a little fun, too -- I hula-hooped -- probably got a little too much attention from the hula-hooping, but the goal was really engaging families and kids in the whole area of fitness. And one of the things that we talked about was the healthy schools initiative that the Department of Agriculture has been supporting. And I made a commitment then that if more schools got onboard that I would invest in visiting those schools, learning more from them, seeing the kids. And this is really the first stop on that promise. And my hope is that we'll be visiting more and more schools and there will be more and more schools that figure out how we can make this happen.
"It's because of successes that you all are having here that it shows us that even when there are few resources there are ways to improve what we're doing in nutrition and fitness. So I'm thrilled to be here, to learn more about how you're making it work."