New propagation area developed
It features a sheltered pavilion for starting new cuttings, a formal plant and pot storage area, a shed to hold garden tools, a fence to exclude resident fairgrounds cats, misters to keep cuttings moist and a handsome decorative gate.
Cronk, who died two years ago at the age of 79, was a forester and woodworker as well as a gardener.
On a cool and windy morning, fellow Master Gardeners gathered at the fairgrounds to remember him, celebrate the new propagation equipment and enjoy strawberry shortcake.
For years, Cronk and his wife, Sandy, allowed the organization to use areas on their farm for plant propagation and storage. The new facilities will allow them to provide more centralized care with less travel.
The wooden walls and roof were removed from the adjacent pavilion, which houses FFA displays during the fair, and replaced with sturdy greenhouse plastic. That created a three-sided shelter where particularly tender plants will be overwintered.