ALLIANCE HISTORIC MODEL FARM
Meet the Model Farm Team
ACRe Master Gardener
Ahron has been planning the Alliance Historic Model Farm since before we even had a farm. You can thank him for conceiving the Passover Garden, Herb Garden and Bayuk "Cigarden."
Experimental Farm Network
If there's one thing Nate loves, it's a challenge. When we asked Nate if he wanted to grow the original crops the Alliance settlers cultivated at the end of the 19th century, using their actual old tools, Nate said "HELL YES."
He thought he would end up far away from Alliance, but the draw of bucolic farm life pulled Nick back in. Now he has mastered growing tobacco, among other crops, and will help us with our Model Farm.
The Four Gardens
Dedicated to the crops and methods grown by the settlers of Alliance in 1882. Common produce were sweet potatoes, blackberries, grapes, watermelon and more.
We will grow varieties of vegetables that are integral to the Passover seder meal as celebrated in the countries and traditions of the Alliance settlers and their patrons. Horseradish is common for maror, the bitter herb. Parsley is used for karpas here in America, but in Germany it is common to use radishes.
Herbs and spices for healing and Jewish rituals. The fragrant spices are called besamim in Hebrew. Lemon balm and shiso mint are two herbs that grow wild here in Alliance NJ.
A tribute to the little known history of tobacco in Alliance. The settlers built a cigar factory at the corner of Gershal and Eppinger Aves and called it "Castle Garden" for the immigration station in Battery Park Manhattan where they arrived in the United States in 1881. And Alliance leader Moses Bayuk's sons Max, Meyer and Sam founded Bayuk Brothers Cigar Company in Philadelphia at the turn of the century.
Heard it through the grapevine
Alliance Colony leader Moses Bayuk grew grapes. Photo from Moses Klein's memoires in Migdal Zophim, the Watch Tower, 1889.
We experimented with a raised Hugelkultur garden bed in our cold-frames in 2020-21. We grew some impressive tomatoes, yellow zuccini, mint and parsley. We will definitely incorporate this method into a portion of our Alliance Historic Model Farm.
Here is a short Instagram video of us building the cold-frame garden beds in 2018. We used old wood pallets, replaced house windows and wood from 100-year old chicken coops on the property.
1. Rotting wood
The wood decomposes over time, releasing nutrients into the soil and retaining moisture so very little watering is required.
2. Dead leaves
Fills around the wood to speed up the decomposition.
This will be very healthy soil with plenty of microbiology!
This program is made possible in part by funds from the New Jersey Historical Commission, a division of the Department of State, through the Salem County Board of County Commissioners & The Salem County Cultural & Heritage Commission.