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WASHINGTON - MARCH 31: U.S. first lady Michelle Obama (3L) plants seedlings with schoolchildren from Bancroft and Hollin Meadows Elementary Schools during the annual Spring Garden Planting event held in the White House Kitchen Garden March 31, 2010 in Washington, DC. Mrs. Obama sponsors the event to teach children the importance of eating healthy foods and to encourage children to spend time outdoors. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
Spring is in the air, and a new vegetable garden is at the White House.
For the second year in a row, first lady Michelle Obama enlisted the help of local elementary school students to plant broccoli, rhubarb and other veggies on the South Lawn.
"It’s getting a little hot now," she told them, "but it’s good digging in the dirt, getting a little dirty, getting dirt under your nails."
Obama said that 1,000 pounds of food were harvested from the first garden on the South Lawn, feeding White House visitors, as well as people at nearby homeless shelters.
And good food wasn't the only fruit of that labor. The garden started a national conversation about healthy eating, she said.
"Everybody is talking about that garden, not just here in Washington, not just here in the United States, but all over the world," the First Lady said. "And we've been able to start thinking about things like getting kids to try new foods that they've never tried, vegetables that they've never had."
This year's White House garden has expanded 400 square feet to a new total of 1,500 square feet and will have four new additions: bok choy, white cauliflower, artichokes and mustard greens.