• September 14, 2023

‘Overseeding’ on top of the grass… The secret to Jeju Teddy Valley Golf & Resort’s seasonal green grass

Teddy Valley Golf & Resort in Jeju Island (Andeok-myeon, Seogwipo City, Jeju Island) was closed for three days from the 11th to the 13th of this month to overseed ryegrass, a Korean bermudagrass that thrives in the high temperatures of summer, in preparation for its dormancy in winter. Overseeding is a seeding method that keeps the turf green all year round by sowing seeds of bentgrass, which grows well in cooler temperatures, in the fall when the temperature drops and the leaves of bentgrass, such as Korean grass, turn yellow. The golf course only accepts a minimum of 30 bookings per day to ensure that the grass grows well for two weeks after overseeding. The golf course that maintains the best golf course by overseeding summer bermudagrass with winter ryegrass is Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia, USA, which hosts the Masters every April. In Korea, Teddy Valley Golf & Resort is the only one. At Teddy Valley Golf & Resort, the grass grows about 3 centimeters after 7 to 10 days of overseeding. After that, it is repeatedly fertilized for about 7 days, so that the grass is in the best condition, almost like a green, in October.

Teddy Valley Golf & Resort held the Doosan E&C Weave Championship, a Korean Ladies Professional Golf (KLPGA) Tour event with a prize fund of 1.2 billion won ($216 million), for four days from August 10. The course boasts a unique landscape where northern and southern plants coexist, with palm trees growing in the dense forests. It had been 15 years since the KLPGA Tour’s BC Card Classic in June 2008. At that time, representative Korean players such as Park Se-ri, Shin Ji-ae, Hong Jin-ju, Choi Na-yeon, and Kim Ha-neul participated, as well as foreign players Miho Koga (Japan) and Anna Lawson (Australia), and Shin Ji-ae won the tournament after an extended playoff.

The golf course, whose familiar symbol, the teddy bear, welcomes golfers throughout the clubhouse, hotel, and resort, has a unique operating philosophy that emphasizes nature conservation, eco-friendliness, and ecosystem preservation. Located at 190 meters above sea level in Andeok-myeon, Seogwipo-si, Jeju-do, the course has views of Mount Bangsan at 395 meters above sea level. The golf course opened in September 2007 with a focus on restoring the “Gokjawal” (Jeju dialect for thorn forest), which is said to be the lungs of Jeju. All of the stones in the forest were dug out and the forest was restored by adding more space to the surrounding area, including the site of an abandoned quarry, which had already been cleared.

Gokjawal is a Jeju dialect word that combines the words ‘gok’, meaning forest, and ‘jawal’, meaning thorny bush. It is a primeval forest formed when plants lived together among the basaltic rocks left behind by lava flows. Cape Jawal is called the ‘lungs of Jeju’ and the ‘air purifier of Jeju’ because it produces clear air in Jeju. It also serves as the waistline connecting the entire ecosystem from Hallasan, the center of Jeju, to the sea.

The area where Teddy Valley Golf & Resort is located has a unique climate and a unique ecosystem within the same promontory due to the air passages formed by lava and the uneven terrain.

Despite the heavy rains and hot and humid climate caused by typhoons this summer, the carpet-like grass was well received by the players during the tournament. Kim Hak-young, who designed the course, said he was inspired by the turf management at Augusta National Golf Club, home of the Masters, a major tournament on the U.S. Professional Golf Association (PGA) Tour.

Groundwater use was minimized as much as possible and a water storage facility was built to hold more than 150,000 tons of water in case of rain. Bermuda grass requires less water than other grass varieties.

The golf course looks like a manicured garden. All 18 holes have a view of the green from the teeing area, allowing you to focus on your approach to the course.

The course was designed with ecological conservation as a priority, including an eco-bridge over a headland between the 7th and 8th holes. A renowned environmental restoration expert from the U.S. was invited to help secure animal migration routes and create an environment where native Jeju plants can thrive. The golf course capitalizes on this natural beauty, creating a course flow and adding tropical touches like palm trees.

The 19th hole that weekend golfers joke about is actually here. Golfers who are not satisfied after 18 holes can pay 10,000 won per team. The money is donated to Jeju education, healthcare, and less fortunate organizations. It’s called the Donor’s Hole.

Teddy Valley Golf & Resort has been recognized as one of Asia’s top 100 golf courses, Korea’s top 10 platinum golf courses (private membership), and Korea’s top 10 clubhouse restaurants.

“Teddy Valley is a 30-minute drive from Jeju International Airport and 10 minutes from Jungmun Tourist Complex, making it easy to access from anywhere in Jeju,” said Cho Chang-ho, CEO of Teddy Valley Golf & Resort. “We want to be remembered as a distinctive course for professional golfers with exceptional skills, and a stress-relieving healing course for weekend golfers 메이저놀이터.”

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