Keeping Craigowan Green
Craigowan is dedicated to providing a top conditioned golf course while maintaining full compliance with all environmental regulations and interfering as little as possible with our members' enjoyment of the golf course. Maintenance crews stay ahead of early golfers for as long as possible and then work in a manner which minimizes contact with players.
Check out the Craigowan Blog for regular updates on course conditions and activity.
Recent Course Upgrades
Over the last few years many upgrades have been done to the course to keep up with the ever increasing standards of golf course excellence including:
- Ongoing bunker renovation to improve bunker consistency and playability: applied new Ohio white sand, improved drainage and performed some moderate re-contouring to improve visibility
- Ongoing drainage and cart path paving
- Implementation of a full length practice range facility
- Completed new forward tee decks to provide optimum playing conditions for our members
Our goal is to ensure that our maintenance practices have a positive effect on the surrounding environment while providing a superior golf course to our members. We work hard to practice maintenance procedures such as aeration, topdressing and proper irrigation adjustments, all of which reduce the need for chemical controls.
We take pride in presenting an immaculately groomed golf course using environmental best practices and have effective plans in place for many of the environmental factors on the golf course including:
- nutrient management
- water quality and usage control
- integrated pest management
Integrated Pest Management (IPM)
The club has been IPM certified since the program began in 2004, and Craigowan was one of the first clubs in Ontario to attain IPM Level II certification. IPM is a process that uses all necessary techniques to suppress landscape pests effectively, economically and in an environmentally sound manner. IPM employs a two-pronged approach:
- Properly managing the plant environment to reduce pest problems, and
- Using thresholds to determine whether or what levels of pest control treatments are warranted.
Part of Craigowan's approach to IPM is the selection of plant species for turf, trees and other plantings most appropriate to our particular climate enabling them to survive with the least amount of pesticide use, while maintaining quality playing conditions. Plant health throughout the property is monitored and recorded regularly to allow for proper management of specific problems as they arise.
Maintenance for Green Quality
Every operation on golf greens is ultimately used to enhance ball roll, either directly, like rolling and mowing, or indirectly, such as aerating to reduce thatch and firm the surface. The finest greens are the result of the most maintenance.
- Mowing - Done daily, mowing reduces surface contact by removing leaf blades, and the rolling action of the mower helps to firm the surface.
- Verticutting - Perpendicular mower blades cut into the turf, ripping out thatch, bringing it to the surface to be blown off or picked up in the catchers on the mowers. An aggressive verticutting and topdressing program begun at Craigowan in 2007 is starting to pay off; with each verticutting, less thatch is being removed while more sand goes in.
- Topdressing - Topdressing allows the ball to ride higher in the turf, reducing resistance and smoothing the playing surface by filling in imperfections such as ball marks and spike marks.
- Rolling - 5 times weekly after mowing, rolling firms up the turf surface and smoothes out high spots.
- Aeration - Improves the overall health of the turf so that further stresses can be placed on it.
- Irrigation - Moisture levels are monitored daily and irrigation amounts are carefully adjusted so as to provide adequate moisture for turf health without affecting the degree of firmness for the players.
- Drainage - Both surface and subsurface drainage ultimately improves turf health and ball roll.
- Plant Growth Regulators - Applied to restrict excessive shoot growth and enhance root growth and turf colour for overall improved plant health.
Craigowan Oxford Golf and Country Club • 595838 Hwy 59 N R.R. # 6 • Woodstock, Ontario, Canada N4S 7W1 • 519-462-2743