xAvailable Now! Utica's Parks & Parkway System Get the app!
Download on the Apple App Store Download on the GooglePlay App Store

Frequently Asked Questions about the CNY Conservancy

About the Conservancy

Are there opportunities to get involved with the Conservancy?
Absolutely! The Conservancy welcomes community involvement at many different levels. We would enjoy hearing from people who wish to volunteer. Formal or informal scholars of local history are always welcome to contact us. If you’d like to book a Conservancy speaker for your group or organization, please get in touch. Contributors large and small are always welcome – you’re the ones who ensure that preservation and restoration efforts in your parks continue! If you’d like to find out more, contact the Conservancy at centralnyconservancy@gmail.com.
What kinds of projects has the Conservancy completed?
The Conservancy has completed a number of projects in the last 11 years since its founding. The most recognizable of them include the following:
  • Restoration of the Lily Pond and Fountain in FT Proctor Park;
  • Bathhouse restoration and planting of flowering crabapple trees in FT Proctor Park;
  • Redesigning and replanting of Parkway Monument flower beds
  • Installation of a Butterfly Garden in FT Proctor Park
  • Restoration of stone staircases and walking paths throughout FT Proctor Park
What is the Central New York Conservancy and what does it do?
The Central New York Conservancy, founded in 2002, promotes stewardship, historic preservation and restoration, ecological health, beautification of public spaces, maintenance and management of sustainable practices, and community partnerships for parks and green spaces in the Mohawk Valley and principally in Utica, NY.


I go to the parks all the time. Can anyone hold an event there?
Citizens are encouraged to use the parks for all kinds of activities – picnics, family reunions, biking, hiking, cross-country skiing, bird watching, drawing and painting, tree and plant identification, dog-walking – the list of outdoor possibilities is endless in all seasons!

And, with three parks of different sizes and equipped with different features – picnic pavilions, ball fields, running paths – Utica’s parks offer a variety of options for personal and public events.

Some events require that you obtain a permit for parks’ use. Call the Utica City Clerk’s Office at 315.792.0113 to learn more.

Landscaping Tips

While the Central New York Conservancy's mission is the restoration and preservation of the Utica Parks and Parkway System, several of our professional advisors and consultants also know a thing or two about landscape care.

If you have a question for us, please submit it and we'll do our best to answer it right here. Please submit your questions using the form found here.

What are the appropriate steps to take in planting an unknown site?
It is very important to know the PH of the soil. Rhododendrons, Azaleas, and Blueberries, for example, require acidic soil. Most perennials, hydrangeas (with the exception of the Endless Summer variety), most trees, and annuals, are content in alkaline soil.

Soil composition: Do you have clay soil, which drains poorly, or sandy loam which drains well? The composition may need amending.

Lighting conditions: How much sun or shade dominates the planting site?
Looking for plants that are easy care?
For high impact, low maintenance use, drought-tolerant annuals such as Dragon Wing Begonias, Euphorbia ("Diamond Frost"), Snapdragons, Desert Rose, and Dusty Miller are good go-to plants. Geraniums are also acceptable but require some deadheading if you want them to flower profusely.
The Steuben Monument on the Parkway is a good example of this type of easy care planting.
How much watering is necessary for good plant care?
Each plant has different requirements and every plant has to be treated individually. Willows (Tree or Shrub), Viburnums, Hydrangeas, and Clethras can tolerate a good soaking. Ninebark shrubs, Norway Spruce, Tulip Trees, and Eastern Hemlocks do not like "wet feet". Excessive amounts of water create a worse environment than does a drought.