Michelle Obama will add another title to her name on May 29. That’s the day the first lady will become a published author, when her debut book, “American Grown: The Story of the White House Kitchen Garden and Gardens Across America,” hits bookstore shelves nationwide.

The book focuses on Mrs. Obama’s work on the White House kitchen garden, which she started in April 2009, and the healthy eating initiative she has sparked.

According to Crown Publishers Group, who is releasing the book, Mrs. Obama shares her experiences as a novice gardener, including her insecurities about the outcome of her efforts.

She received no advance payment for the book. The proceeds are to go to the National Park Foundation to be used for programs that promote healthy eating, according to the White House. The book also offers “an unprecedented look at every season of the garden’s growth, from the first planting to the latest harvest,” with accompanying photographs. The garden includes lettuce, corn, tomatoes, collards and kale, sweet potatoes and rhubarb.

Included are the White House chefs’ unique recipes made from the freshly harvested crops. And the White House Garden team offers readers tips on how to cultivate plots in backyards, or in school or community gardens.

“American Grown” is a continuation of the healthy-living initiatives championed by the first lady since she moved into 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

Students recently joined the first lady for spring planting in the garden as part of her widespread effort to foster better eating habits among children.


Zenitha Prince

Special to the AFRO