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Published: 2004-07-12 00:00:00

The corporate winners of Environment Waikato’s Great E-Scape adventure through the Region got out of their suits and into their gumboots last week to plant the proceeds of their $1500 first prize on banks of the Little Waipa stream near Arapuni.

The four-person Ecolab team, the Clean Team, won $1,500 cash and $600 of Earthwise product vouchers. The team – Don Short, Bryce Watkins, James McGruer and Bonnie Giles won the prize in the two-day competition ahead of 19 other teams in March. The Great E-Scape was the launch event for the Festival of the Environment.

The team members decided to spend their winnings on native plants for the streamside project, and provide a trophy for next year’s competition. They managed to source about 400 native plants through a local nursery and spent an afternoon this week making sure they were planted.

About 50 trees were planted on a fenced riparian margin of a stream and the rest were distributed amongst the other 23 landowners involved in the local Streamcare group.

The group turned up in business suits but were soon in gardening gear for the exercise.

Leader Don Short said the event had taught all the team members a great deal, especially about water quality issues, and they wanted to ensure their prize made a difference in the environment.