Willow Oaks Country Club Golf Course Updates

Our goal is to keep the membership informed about projects, agronomic practices, and upcoming events on the golf course.


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Maintenance Calendar, Follow us via Email or Social Media, and ways to find more information


Spring Aeration

Golf Course Closed March 27-31


February Golf Course Update

Winter Projects, Bunker Maintenance, and Greens Aeration Schedule


Air Movement and Fan Video

I took this video to show the efficacy and performance of our new Turf Breeze portable 50" Fan.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Improving Your Experience

'Improving Your Experience' is our guiding principle behind every golf course project the Green Committee approves and our team executes.   Renovating the tree line between holes 12 and 13 was one of our main priorities this year.  I think it is safe to say that the renovations to the tree line between holes 10 and 12 as well as the large areas left of 6, left of 11, and right of 12 tees have been very successful.  All of these projects included the turf propagation method of sprigging. 

Sprigging involves turning sod into small shreds of stolons and rhizomes (bermudagrass plant parts) for the purpose of planting these pieces.  These shreds of grass are much easier to transport and cover much more square footage than the original sod that produced them.  The sprigs are planted and then over about 2 months grow together to form a consistent turf surface.  

This method of planting turf  is a great option for large areas in the rough as it is about 7 times less expensive than sod.  Trees were removed and mulch beds, irrigation components, pine needle beds and sod were installed prior to sprigging.  It takes longer to create a great playing surface but the financial benefits allow us to cover a lot more ground.  We still have to sod areas along cart paths and around mulch beds to end up with a good finished product.  This is the heaviest sprig rate we have ever gone with and we expect to have a good stand of turf heading into the fall.  The area will be very wet under and around the sprigs as we have to heavily irrigate to grow everything in.  Please play the entire staked area between holes 12 and 13 as ground under repair.  In the next few months, the sprigs will grow together to create a great playing surface and hopefully "Improve your Experience."

Please enjoy this beautiful weather,

Jordan Booth

Our sod supplier shreds their sod into sprigs and delivers them the same day to keep them healthy.  This is what an acre of sprigs looks like before they are planted.
Our team spreads the sprigs by hand.  We use a very heavy rate to speed up coverage.  The only way to achieve this rate is by hand.  Our team pegs the sprigs into the ground with the discs on an old sprigging machine.  The sprigs are then fertilized and watered aggressively until they grow together.  This area will be very wet for the next few weeks.  Please observe the stakes and ropes and keep the golf carts out of saturated areas.

This is the current finished product.  The real finished product will reveal itself in a few months.
Our goal is to always improve the player's experience.  I hope this improves your aesthetic experience while you play your ball from the fairway.  If you happen to get a bad bounce into the finished product, it will provide a better lie and more shot options.  This area is currently staked off and should be played as ground under repair.  Remember that casual water and sod seams qualify for a drop under most situations.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Preparing for a few closed days of Project Work

The last month has been wet to say the least.  Over 11 inches of rain in the last 5 weeks has changed our management practices quite a bit.  On a positive note, we pumped 6.6 million less gallons this June than we did in June of 2012.  In fact, we have not run the irrigation system at night in over 5 weeks.  Our team has been busy topdressing venting and spiking greens to help keep them dry and performing well.  Venting, coupled with rain leads to softer than ideal conditions but is necessary to keep the greens dry and performing well.  The wet conditions have also caused us to tighten our chemical windows i.e. spray more frequently as well as add more nutrients that continue to be washed away by the rain.  Frequency and quality of cut on fairways, tees and rough has been reduced as well.  Everything is being mowed as often as possible when we are dry enough to get out there.  Overall, we have been very pleased with the course's performance.  It was a great decision to drill and fill, dryject, add fans and add drainage this past season.  All of these practices are paying huge dividends right now.  Any drainage weaknesses are showing themselves this year.

The golf course will be closed on Monday, July 15 and Tuesday July 16 for scheduled maintenance.  Greens will be vented, topdressed and receive soil amendments.  Fairways will be sprayed to slow down growth, improve turf quality and produce a better surface.  Our team will be installing a truckload of sod and a truckload of sprigs around the golf course.  A few areas will be improved but the main area of disturbance will be between holes 12 and 13.  Trees were removed this winter and this area will strongly resemble the project that we completed last year between holes 10 and 12.  I am excited to renovate this area and continue to improve the southeast corner of the golf course.  The area between holes 9, 13, and 14 is scheduled for renovation next year. 

Next week looks to be drier and a bit warmer.  I hope the course continues to dry out so we can provide more consistent playing conditions. 

Have a great weekend,


The Turf Pathology department has been on site a few times this year.  Dave McCall (blue shirt) is studying the affects of fans on root health, soil temperature and soil moisture.  Anecdotal evidence show that the fans work but Dave and his team are working to prove how and why they work.  It is always great to have a great relationship with these guys and borrow from their expertise.

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