Jill Biden gave Michelle Obama a huge basket of produce from the WH garden


This story makes me warm all over. As we all know, Dr. Jill Biden and Ms. Michelle Obama enjoyed a warm and respectful relationship while the Obamas occupied the White House. Any time the two ladies get together, their friendship and mutual admiration is obvious. The other day, our new FLOTUS sent the former FLOTUS one of the most thoughtful gifts, it made me bubble up in the feels. Dr. Jill sent MObama a beautiful basket of healthy winter vegetables from the White House Kitchen Garden, one of Michelle’s passion projects while she lived there. Michelle posted the basket to her Instagram:

Michelle captioned the photo:

So thankful for this beautiful care package from our amazing @FLOTUS! These fresh veggies from the White House Kitchen Garden were such a wonderful — and delicious — surprise. Love you, Jill!

I am fairly committed to never giving the last administration credit for anything, but I am grateful to the groundskeeper who kept this garden going… and camouflaged it behind a bunch of mirrors so certain narcissists never looked any farther. Because the veggies do look great. That’s one amazing soup waiting to be made. I think I’ve told this story before but the church I used to attend dug up its lawn and planted a vegetable garden, sending its crop to local food banks. We sent a ton of hearty greens – a lot of chard and kale – in the beginning and the shelters had never seen it before. So the second load, we sent of bunch of recipes with them. Now they are greens experts. That’s a rutabaga on top of Michelle’s basket, isn’t it? Oh man, she could have had a nice little rutabaga, turnip mash with some of that purple tipped broccoli thrown in. She could get a root vegetable gratinée going, but I imagine that amount of butter and cream would defeat the purpose of that nice healthy basket of veggies.

The part that got me in the heart, though, was of all the little gestures Dr. Jill could have made, this would mean the most to Michelle. It reinforces how much Michelle matters and what an impression she left on all of us. A sign of respect that Michelle came before Jill and she hopes to be the kind of FLOTUS that Michelle was. It’s lovely and absolutely what I would expect from Dr. Jill. It was like her second day as FLOTUS when she passed out cookies to the National Guard in front of the White House to thank them. They were looking after her family, she’s a mom, she baked them some cookies. Only she didn’t, because she doesn’t bake, so she said the White House made them. But that was also important statement, because the Guardsmen were outside the White House that housed the President of the United States of America and this POTUS appreciates those who look after the country. Jill’s got this. Of course she does, she had a great mentor.


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44 Responses to “Jill Biden gave Michelle Obama a huge basket of produce from the WH garden”

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  1. KBeth says:

    Makes me happy to have gracious people inhabiting the White House.

    • Embee says:

      Dr Biden impresses me so much. I think we are yet to know the depth of her awesomeness and she will continue to delight and inspire us as long as she holds the FLOTUS title.

      Remember her fending off the activist at a speech/rally? Remember her pulling candidate Joe back from someone who’d gotten too close during the pandemic? She’s smart, tough and gracious. Pretty much the opposite of “eff creesmus”

      • Esmom says:

        Oh yeah, I almost forgot about that incident. So scary. She is awesome and having warmth and humanity back in the WH is such a gift.

  2. Insomniac says:

    So freaking grateful to have a decent, classy FLOTUS again. I’m also pleasantly surprised Michelle Obama’s vegetable garden survived the last four years and didn’t get torn up out of spite.

    • Splinter says:

      Is it possible that the vegetable garden got mixed up with the Kennedy rose garden? Just a thought.

    • jessamine says:

      That was my first thought! But then, weren’t there stories back in 2016 about how she had the raised beds walled with cement to make them harder to demolish?

    • Christin says:

      That’s the biggest surprise of the story, isn’t it?

      Thankfully the rumored AF1 exterior design never happened, either. I was dreading what garish “design” would replace the iconic robin’s egg blue and tasteful lettering that Jackie selected in the early 1960s.

    • Eleonora says:

      I think Trump was always kind of cautious about Michelle Obama and insulting her, because of her popularity.

      • Nina Simone says:

        I think so too, he never insulted her by calling her names- except sarcastically responding to her 2020 DNC speech. If he had, we would have all drove down to the White House !

        Also remember when Melania plagiarized Michelle? Her spokesperson said Melania was a huge fan of Michelle that’s why she did it. The Trumps are in awe of and jealous of the Obamas.

  3. Sofia says:

    I love their friendship so much. It’s very clear that Michelle and Jill enjoy each other’s company and have nothing less than respect, admiration and love for each other.

    And yes those veggies look delicious!

  4. Muffintop says:

    Ummmm, what an amazing thing for a church to do — plant a veggie patch and donate the produce! How is that not a thing done everywhere, it is a FABULOUS idea — so useful! Such a great use of space!

    Also fabulous? Everything else about this story! Dr Jill, Michelle’s veggie legacy, the obvious respect and affection between these two women…. this is heartwarming. (And a giant EFF YOU to 45, that a random story about vegetables almost makes me teary — that’s how starved of common decency we’ve all been!)

    • SarahCS says:

      I love the church story. I used to donate to food banks via the collection point at the supermarket so obviously everything has to be canned and long-life but more recently one of our neighbours started to coordinate a weekly collection for three local groups and they specifically ask for fresh vegetables and fruits alongside the nappies, sanitary towels, flour, etc. and it’s so nice to hear her updates on the feedback they’re getting from the organisers and users of the services we now support.

    • Esmom says:

      Yes, I loved that story too. And I love how the recipients are now “greens experts.”

  5. Seraphina says:

    Finally, some feel good stories coming from inside the WH because our first couple is demonstrating how we should all behave – with kindness and thoughtfulness of others. Unlike the previous one which was all about themselves and how deep their nepotism could be solidily rooted.
    Dr. Jill and MObama friendship and mutual respect for one another is so touching. Love seeing how happy they are when in each others company.

  6. Myra says:

    That’s just lovely. It warms my heart to see decency in the limelight again and of course back in the WH. I can go back to worrying about my life, without feeling like the apocalypse is near.

    • HoofRat says:

      We’ve been so starved for thoughtfulness and decency and graciousness these last four years. Personally, I think we should just focus on these two remarkable First Ladies and do everything we can to forget that bone-lazy anamoly that came between them.

  7. Lucy2 says:

    I love this! And the story of the church’s garden. Glad the WH garden survived the last 4 years.

  8. Lola Coasters says:

    Anyone else sitting here reading this with a smile on their face? Love this story, thanks Hecate!

    • Lilly (with the double-L) says:

      Yes, me too. Although, I get a bit of anxiety when my neighbors give me lots of veggies, that I won’t use them all. But, I know Michelle Obama is likely a lot more organized than I am on cooking and planning ahead.

    • MaryContrary says:

      A smile, and because occasionally something breaks through to my cold, cynical heart, a few tears. It’s so nice to have another wonderful family occupying the WH after the past hideous four years.

  9. Mina_Esq says:

    I know we must never forget what happened with Trump so it can hopefully never happen again, but I am in favor of glossing over that presidency and pretending it didn’t exist when it comes to these fun gestures. I’m all for pretending that Michelle was the FLOTUS that immediately preceded Dr. Jill. Melania who?

  10. Pocket Litter says:

    Lovely story. Thank you, Hecate.

  11. Elizabeth says:

    I realize this is a sideline but how does a garden actually continue in winter? Of course I live in the frozen north, but still. Maybe a greenhouse?

    • Abby says:

      The veggies in this basket are winter produce – they can survive frozen temps! I have these same items growing in my garden right now.

      They also could have a greenhouse. :-)

    • Becks1 says:

      It depends on the produce – we live near a large farm and they have produce throughout the winter, I think they have brussel sprouts up until December or later, and now they have some of the hardier vegetables. they close their farm store lol but put the produce on the porch in an honor system thing (so you pick up what you want and then put the money in the box.)

      Also (I’m in Maryland, so not far from DC) we are in some fairly cold weather right now but its not abnormal either for there to be long stretches of temps ranging from the 20s-50s in the winter (lows in the 20s, getting up to the high 40s or even 50 during the day) so its not the same winter as some of the really northern areas. Right now though its freezing lol.

    • Agirlandherdog says:

      Winter gardens are a thing. There are a whole host of cruciferous and root veggies that do better in the cold. 2019-2020, my kale continued to thrive with no care from September to May when my husband finally dug it up in order to plant our summer garden. I’m in a DC suburb also, so gardening in the mid-Atlantic is probably very different than say upstate NY.

  12. L84Tea says:

    Mmmm, vegetable porn….There is something about a big, beautiful pile of fresh veggies that just lights me up. :-)

  13. Nikki* says:

    Thanks Hecate! Love your article, and agree with every sentiment you expressed about BOTH women! YAY: a happy story!

  14. Alarmjaguar says:

    Decided to read this story first to start the day and wasn’t disappointed. Such a thoughtful gesture, plus I loved your veggie ideas, Hecate! I got a winter CSA box from a local farmer this year and am learning how to cook all kinds of new (to me) vegetables. Warm fuzzies all around.

  15. Abby says:

    I love this story! I am so enjoying seeing how Dr. Biden makes this FLOTUS role her own and look forward to what she does in the future!

  16. Alexandria says:

    Dr Biden…another lady I’ll add to my list of superwomen. Angelina Jolie, Meghan Markle, Kamala Harris, Hillary Clinton, Dolly Parton, AOC, Michelle Obama… I love their achievements!

  17. Charfromdarock says:


    I’m envious of a winter garden! My garden is under a meter of snow already, with 2 1/2 months of winter to go.

  18. Ohpioneer says:

    I love almost everything about this story. Now I’d like to hear how MObama turned around and gifted these fabulous veggies to someone who couldn’t afford to buy them. It would be nice if the WH donated all their produce to a local food bank.

  19. Jay says:

    I said it about President Biden, but it also applied here: what a freaking relief that when I hear “Have you seen what the President/First Lady posted online” it’s gonna be that Dr. Biden sent a basket of fresh veggies to the former first family.

    Question: Was the produce being donated all of this time? There’s no way that any of the Trumps knew what to do with a rutabaga.

  20. TheOriginalMia says:

    This was a lovely gesture from Dr. Biden to Michelle. I really thought they bulldozed the garden to make the tennis courts. Happy to know it’s still there and was being tended to by the gardeners.

  21. Faithmobile says:

    Love these two. rutabaga is delicious in beet soup and Paul Hollywood puts rutabaga in his Cornish Pasties. And now I feel guilty I don’t have more in my winter garden as it never drops below 32 here. Also what a meaningful gift?!

  22. Finny says:

    The two top vegetables (purple and white) are Kohlrabi. A delicious mild and crunchy veggie that is low calorie, also very healthy and belongs to the cabbage family. I love it raw or cooked. I tried to grow it in my garden because it’s hard to find in grocery stores but sadly I have no success and like every year I will try again and hope this time I will succeed.

  23. Murphy says:

    Beautiful basket

  24. Bibi says:

    great basket – a gift with the souvenir of what was created while they were both at the white house together and most probably a sign that Jill will continue Michelle’s project. Friendship is so beautiful.

  25. april says:

    I love it! Sounds like such a quaint thing to do.

  26. Sushiroll says:

    Thank you for posting this. It’s so beautiful to see such kindness and respect. We need more of these thoughtful gestures all around. They’re good for everyone’s soul. 💗