Mount Hope Cemetery looks picturesque on a cold winter day, "there are a lot of projects within the cemetery, besides the trees, that need to be done to get it to a point where it reflects what it looked like in its important historic period," explained Zakery Steele, Trustee for Friends of Mount Hope.
A walk through the cemetery's 196 acres will take you through history. The paths are lined with many trees that are diseased and dying, "I've been involved with the cemetery organization since 2010, and since 2010 we've had to remove 250 trees because of poor condition," said Mary Gaudioso of the City of Rochester's Department of Environmental Services.
Fixing the problem isn't easy. The city is trying to raise $70,000 over the next two years to plant 250 new trees, "we're right on par right now," said Gaudioso, "we've raised $10,635 through the end of last week, so we're excited about that."
Planting can't happen without a plan, "you think you can plant a tree wherever there's an open spot but part of what makes the cemetery so important is the design and landscape," said Steele.
The hope is by maintaining Mount Hope's landscape the cemetery's legacy will be preserved for generations to come.
The city has been awarded a $15,000 grant from the New York Department of Environmental conservation to come up with a management plan for trees in the north section of the cemetery. It's working to get a grant to create a management plan for the south section.
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