By Lee Kyung Mi and Kim Minji
Video = Presidential Security Service
Cheong Wa Dae, located at the foot of Inwangsan Mountain in Seoul’s central district of Jongno-gu, is surrounded by 50,000 trees spanning 180 species from all over the country. Such lush greenery creates a green look around the presidential office.
Cheong Wa Dae on Jan. 7 released a documentary video on the trees titled “First Look at Cheong Wa Dae’s Trees” via social media. For those unable to visit the presidential office despite the area being open to everyone, this 50-minute video offers a marvelous view of the compound.
Divided into three parts, the video contains interviews with Lee Bo-yeon, who was chief landscaper at Cheong Wa Dae for 34 years, and gardener Roh Hoi-eun. Starting from the eastern section and moving west through the main building Chunchugwan and Yeongbingwan Guest House, the documentary covers the history and stories of the surrounding trees.
The goldenrain tree holds high significance as a tree symbolizing peace on the Korean Peninsula, with its name meaning “prosperity.” President Moon Jae-in in September last year planted the tree to mark the inter-Korean summit held the same month.
He personally transported the tree from South Korea and planted it himself. Just as the goldenrain tree can bear fruit, the president hoped for fruitful results bringing both Koreas closer.
The video also covers a yew tree, which at 740 years is the oldest tree at Cheong Wa Dae, as well as rhododendrons, which Ri Sol Ju, the wife of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, mentioned last year when they visited Baekdusan Mountain with President Moon.
The video is available on Cheong Wa Dae’s homepage (http://www1.president.go.kr) and Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/TheBlueHouseKR) and the official YouTube channel of the Presidential Security Service (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCsIvXMp-dXksyQ9wrj7o-ZQ).