In Washington, D.C., I walked around the White House a few days before the government shutdown.
You will, perhaps, be as happy as I was (not) to see that red wax begonias are still the go-to plant there. (The dusty miller is gone though.)
The big number 1 in front of the Old Executive Office Building is new this year. I’m sure it relates to the monument behind it, which commemorates those who died while serving in the First Division of the U.S. Army. Let’s hope it’s being sprayed with something organic — or no worse than Miracle-Gro.
The W.H. vegetable garden did look nice, but apparently it has since taken a hit with the shutdown. For an interesting account — which has made headlines via several major news outlets — see the blog Obama Foodorama here.
[The White House vegetable garden during the shutdown] now maybe looks more like a lot of other people’s gardens. If the purpose is to try to get Americans to grow their own healthy food, maybe a garden that doesn’t look pristine is not such a bad thing.
— Katherine Jellison, history professor at Ohio University
I’m skipping around somewhat in sharing my photos from our March travels. Today I’m back to Washington, D.C.
I’ve been a little curious about the White House vegetable garden and its exact location, because the W.H. grounds are not enormous — not after you subtract for enough lawn to land a helicopter or two, press/security tents and equipment, large conifers for privacy, roses, etc.
But on a walk I took about March 15, I passed by the fence on the south side and there it was (on the far left of the first photo below).
The Park Service seemed to be doing some spring cleanup, although the beds looked pretty well planted out with various early greens. (Click any photo to enlarge it.)
About 10 days after I passed by, schoolchildren and Mrs. Obama officially planted out the 2012 garden.
There’s a very interesting post in Early American Gardens about the White House Gardens in the 19th century, here.