Biodiversity on golf courses


Biodiversity loss and ecosystem collapse are among the biggest threats humanity faces in the next decade. The EU Biodiversity Strategy for 2030 proposes a more holistic approach to biodiversity policy. Protecting and restoring nature cannot solely be imposed by regulation it must include all relevant actors in the periurban and rural landscape. Golf courses could contribute to the produc­tion of biological diversity, the conservation of na­tural and cultural environments and the retention and expansion of ecosystem services in periurban environments and the cultivated landscape. In this project five pilot golf courses, Ullared – Flädje GC, Vinbergs GC, Harabäckens GC, Hofgårds GC, will demonstrate how to improve biodiversity at the golf course by creating habitats for pollinating insects. Four methods will be used to improve the golf areas, (a) burning, mowing, seed mixtures to increase pollen and nectar in edges/roughs, (b) sand treatment and bunkers, (c) protecting old and dead trees, and (d) increase flowering shrubs. Measures and management activities, inventories, evaluation, and reporting will be carried out in collaboration with experts at, Varberg and Falkenberg municipalities, Linné University and external consultants.

The project is planned to start early summer 2020 by kick-off meetings at the five golf clubs respectively. In connection with these meeting the first inventory of plants and inscects will be carried out. 

The golf course managers will create new knowledge and experiences on how to improve biodiversity which will be spread to golf courses and municipalities in all Nordic countries. The project will generate check lists, fact sheets on how to improve biodiversity on golf courses. Field trips will be arranged and information signs will be posed. A final report in Swedish will be published. 

The project will help to fulfill the sustainable development goal 15, ecosystems and biodiversity,  set in the UN  Agenda 2030.

Peter Edman

Peter Edman, Swedish Golf Federation, Box 11016, 10061 Stockholm. Tel +46 70 266 5686. Email:

Category: Multifunctional golf facilities
Status: Ongoing
Project period: 2020 - 2023

Fundings (kSEK)





















Other sources





790 000


197 000

200 000

1577 000











* 50% in SEK and 50% in in-kind funding

Project objectives

  • To create a rolemodell for local partnership between golf courses and the municipality;
  • To improve biodiversity on golf courses through increased knowledgeg of golf course managers on how to create changes in the golf course environment;
  • To study specific effects of measures and management regimes on the golf courses aimed at increasing pollinators on ecosystem services and the playability of the roughs.
  • To evaluate how management treatments have filtering effects on pollinating species depending on their specific traits
  • To spread new knowledge and experience to golf courses and municipalities, nationally and internationally.