Christchurch student gardeners taste success

  • Marie Hasler
Associate Minister of the Environment

Hon Marie Hasler, Associate Minister for the Environment presented the 1999 Green Ribbon Award to the Kids Edible Garden Project at Papanui High School in Christchurch today.

"Since the project started more than 14 Christchurch primary schools, as well as the Kimi Ora Unit at Papanui High School, have become involved in growing their own produce and learning sustainable organic methods," Ms Hasler said at the awards ceremony.

"The Kids Edible Garden project sets out to teach children about growing plants organically, building healthy soils, turning waste into compost as part of a school recycling scheme and controlling pests by natural means.

"These gardens are the result of the hard work of Organic Garden Trust members and the leadership of Ms Frankie Dean. Many teachers, gardeners, parents and students are involved in this project in Christchurch, with considerable interest being shown nation-wide.

"Creating a learning environment with tangible rewards where students learn valuable skills and get to eat the end results is beneficial in more ways than one."

Ms Hasler said the national Green Ribbon Awards recognise the contributions and achievements made by groups and individuals towards a healthy and sustainable environment.

This year's winners are playing a major role in promoting environmental education. The other two winners are David Craig of Waiuku and Palmer & Son Limited of Dunedin.

Mr Craig, a farmer, landowner and founding member of the Awhitu Landcare group willingly provides advice and help for other new landcare groups. On his own property he has also demonstrated practical ways for farmers to take care of the natural environment.

Palmer & Son, presented with its award on Monday, was nominated by the Institute of Quarrying for its effort and commitment to restoring an old quarry into a garden featuring more than 20,000 trees and shrubs.

Ms Hasler also highly commended three other nominees. These are the Water Services Unit of the Christchurch City Council, the Waikato Environmental Business Network and Resene Paints Limited.