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, April 26, 2017


The golf course has received 3 inches of rain over the last week.  While wet weather is typical this time of year, it still presents challenges.  We have actually fared much better than many courses in the area but the course is very saturated.  All turf surfaces are growing well and the warmer temperatures over the next 7 days will really keep things moving.  Today, our team is venting greens to allow the saturated greens to "breathe",  Venting creates very small holes in the surface that penetrate through the top 3" of the green and allows oxygen in to the roots while helping the greens dry out.  Two appropriate analogies to venting would be: 

1. Opening a window to a stuffy, humid house automatically makes everything inside the house more comfortable
2.  If you put your thumb over the end of a straw, it will never drain.  Remove your thumb and the straw works correctly.  Venting allows an opening at the top of the green so the greens can drain more effectively.  

Our team mows right behind the vent and the holes are barely visible and should not impact putting at all.  The greens are recovering well from the aggressive aeration programs this spring.  We anticipate being 100% healed over by May 1.  Greens are healthy and growing well, it just takes time to rebound from aeration.  The rains and warm weather have the golf course at least a month ahead of schedule.  It looks like July out there and our main attention is now focused on course setup and maintenance.  After all of the rain, our main focus this week will be to get all surfaces mowed and prep for sod installation next week.  On Monday, we will be installing a few more fan poles, repairing the rock wall on 7, and fertilizing the entire golf course.  

Have a great weekend,

Jordan Booth, CGCS
Stephen and Tomas vented greens today ahead of the mowers.  We use the same machine to vent greens that we do to aerate greens, just with a much smaller solid tine and a roller attachment to smooth the surface.  

This greens profile shows the value to deep tine aeration.  The roots on the right are growing down, through a deep tine channel.  Deep, healthy roots lead to firm, healthy greens.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

A Picture Worth Sharing

I thought this picture from Creative Dog Media was worth sending out.  Creative Dog does amazing work and specializes in drone photography with most of their work in and around Richmond.  Here is a link to their twitter feed:  

Greens were rolled this morning and mowed dry this afternoon.  We will mow greens dry whenever possible to avoid picking up too much sand and dulling the mowers.  We will continue to alternate mowing and rolling and encourage a quick recovery from aeration.

Have a great weekend,

Jordan Booth, CGCS

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

April Update

I feel like the Masters is always the unofficial start to the golf season.  The excitement of the back 9 on Sunday surely inspired most of us to knock the rust off the clubs and get out on the course.  The early warm weather has kicked the golf course into gear.  Greens, tees, and fairways are all growing very well.  Greens are recovering from aeration and fairways are at least 3 weeks ahead of schedule.  We are actively mowing tees and fairways and are finishing the first mowing on the rough this week.  The last drainage project will take place next Monday, fan wire and bases will be installed by the end of the month, and repairs to the rock walls around the property are  underway.  The time of year for projects is quickly coming to a close and we are looking forward to normal maintenance.

Our team wrapped up the renovation of the bunkers on 10 and 14.  Drainage has been installed and new liner and sand installed in the bunkers.  Whenever new sand is added, we have to make sure it gets compacted to prevent plugging.  Our team has been busy compacting, water, and rolling bunkers to provide a firm surface.

This drainage project behind the silver tee on #3 is being finished this week.  We will install additional drainage between this tee and the fairway on #3 next week.  While there are always more drainage projects to do, these will finish our winter list.  Overall, the team installed 16 different drainage projects.  
This past Monday, April 10, ClearVision turf performed the DryJect process on greens.  The DryJect is a machine that injects kiln dried sand into the greens to create channels similar to core aeration.  The difference is that the DryJect does not remove any material.  The DryJect does a nice job of relieving compaction and getting more sand into the greens profile.  This will be our last aggressive cultural practice on greens until August.  Greens are growing very well and will get better and better every day.  
ClearVision provides the machines and operators while our team fills the machines with sand.  The DryJect injects high pressure water into the greens, pulling sand into the void and relieving compaction.
This picture illustrates the benefits of all of the cultural practices this spring.  The dark thatch in the top inch of the profile is the target of these practices.  While the Graden linear aeration and core aeration remove material and backfill with sand, the DryJect simply injects sand into the profile.  All of these practices impact thatch and provide healthier, firmer surfaces.  
Have a great week,

Jordan Booth, CGCS

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