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.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Updated Aeration Schedule

After monitoring the extended forecast, the scheduled greens aeration has been delayed one week, and is now scheduled for Monday, March 10th through Friday, March 14th.  We are still scheduled for the deep vertical mowing on Tuesday March 25th.  During this time, our golf course maintenance staff will undertake routine agronomic practices that cannot be performed while golfers are on the course.  Greens aeration, Drill & Fill, vertical mowing along with sand injection will be the focus of this closed time.

On Monday of this week, the greens were deep, solid tine aerated.  This solid tine goes down 8-9" and provides the soil and plant with great benefits.  Improved water infiltration, rooting, and soil oxygen as well as reduced compaction are all benefits of this process.  The real goal of this process is to go deeper than traditional aeration practices.  Arborscapes was also here on Monday to prune the large Willow Oak tree behind the clubhouse.  This yearly process helps take unnecessary weight off of the tree while also removing any dead or damaged wood.  Our team has also finished installing the electrical and mounting components for the fans on holes 14, 17, 5, and the Driving Range Green.  We will be working on getting all of the components ready for the fan on #2 in the next few weeks.  Fans are scheduled to be installed on holes 2, 5, and 14 by April 15.  Thank you for your patience during the fan installations and putting green aeration.

The finished product is great after this machine.  All 21 greens were finished in about 10 hours.  The greens are simply rolled and soil amendments are added to get nutrients deep into the greens.
Arborscapes skillfully and carefully climbed and worked on this great tree.  Every cut had to be carefully lowered down onto the patio.  We rely on their expertise and skill during these large projects.  Thank you to our staff for quickly cleaning the debris up and putting the patio back together.

Have a great week,

Jordan Booth, CGCS

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Preparing for Spring Aeration

It is hard to imagine with this winter's weather but the 2014 growing season is getting ready to start here in central Virginia. The first week of March really kicks off the 2014 growing season for our team.  The golf course will be closed March 3-7 and March 24-25 for aeration.  The rest of March will be dedicated to fan installations, stump grinding, drainage installation, irrigation installation, and above all healing over from aeration. 

Weather permitting, our team along with Harmon Turf Services will perform three aggressive cultural practices to our greens during the month of March.

1. Our team will Core aerate and backfill topdress with .55" holes on a 2" x 2" spacing. (March 3-5)  (Aeration Blog Post)
 This process that we perform every spring pulls a core from the green and the holes are backfilled with sand.
2. Harmon Turf Services will be performing the Drill and Fill with 1" holes on a 7.5" x 7.5" spacing. (March 6-7) (Blog Post: "Showing the benefits of Drill and Fill with a Camera")
This is the same process that was performed last spring.   
3. Once this begins to heal, Harmon will be coming back to perform the Graden work with 2 mm blades 1 1/4 inch deep and sand injection. 
This is a picture of the Graden with sand injection.  The Graden cuts 2mm wide channels into the greens surface and backfills it with fresh sand.  This removes a large amount of thatch, improves surface firmness, and improves drainage.  It does a great job of getting a large amount of sand into the putting green surface.
These three processes will combine to incorporate over 120 tons of sand into and onto the greens.  This will be a great improvement for our greens and sets us up well for a successful 2014.  We have already seen great improvements from the drill and fill process performed last fall.  Much deeper rooting, firm surfaces, and better drainage are a few of the noticeable differences.  We will be drill and filling this year in a different direction to minimize hitting the same holes as last fall.  We expect to have everything healed back in by mid to late April, depending on weather.  There will be a lot of disruption to the putting surface so expect bumpy, sandy conditions.  We perform these processes early in the season to minimize disruption.  Short term pain will lead to long term gains this year.  I will have a lot of pictures and videos from the processes as they happen.  We hope for good weather beginning next week and for the entire 2014 golfing season.

Stay safe this week,

Jordan Booth, CGCS

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