Goffle Brook Farms 425 Goffle Road, Ridgewood, NJ, USA
Posted on February 11, 2019 / 72
Listing Type : Farmers' Markets
Location : Bergen
Contact Person : Donna Dorsey

Goffle Brook Farms is a full scale gardening center and farmer’s market located in Ridgewood, N.J. Open 7 days a week from Spring through Christmas; we carry a diverse and large selection of sun and shade perennials, seasonal color and annuals, five different grades and varieties of mulches as well as garden soils and amendments. Our Farmer’s Market provides locally grown fresh produce, fruits, and vegetables. Stop in and meet us today.

On Goffle Road, the locals know spring has sprung when the pansies start to appear at Goffle Brook Farm. Many people drive by the desolate store looking for some sign of life, knowing that soon the lights will once again be on, the “closed for the winter sign” gone, and the store bursting with flowers. This is how life at “The Farm” begins.
Goffle Brook Farm was first opened on May 1st, 1968. Although Richard and Dancy Osborne were new to business, farming was nothing new to the couple. Dancy’s father, Clinton Carlough, had been the largest apple grower in the state of New Jersey. When the young couple married, Richard began working at the family farm. He loved the farming lifestyle from his very first day. He liked working outside. He enjoyed selling at the farmers market. But most of all, Richard liked the changes that the seasons brought to his job duties. He tried to convince his father-in-law to open a farm stand much like the Tice’s and Van Ripers had done many years before.

Unable to convince Dancy’s father the young couple opened Goffle Brook Farm with a working capital of $8,000. They took some of the old apple boxes and turned them into display shelves. They bought Peter’s 20-20-20 (the Miracle Grow of their day) and packaged it into zip lock bags, so they could offer this great product to the public. Sand and stone were brought in by the truckload and bagged for retail sales. Their two daughters, Donna and Wendy, were constant fixtures at the store. As hard as the work was, Richard and Dancy loved it. Together, they were realizing their dream come true.

Following Tice and Van Ripers lead, Richard and Dancy offered fresh local produce in the summer, a tradition that still lives on. In the fall they decided they would become one of the first garden centers to really focus on Halloween and the harvest celebrations so popular out in the country. The Van Ripers invited Dancy to come and watch their resident painter at work.

Although he painted with an air brush, she learned enough to start painting her own version of his painted pumpkins. Dancy taught this technique to her teenage daughters and fall at the farm became a tradition highly anticipated by many for miles around. Generations of Bergen County residents grew up with these pumpkins and now bring their children to choose their own unique Goffle Brook Farm hand painted pumpkins.

In December most of those loyal customers come back for the spectacular wreaths that are still made completely by hand at the Goffle Brook Farm. Many a family has made it their tradition to get their Christmas tree at Goffle Brook Farm.

Oddly enough, one of the things most customers remember best about Richard and Dancy Osborne was what they did when they were closed for the winter. Regulars knew that the day after Christmas, Richard and Dancy promptly left town, bound for the Florida Keys. Every year, like clockwork, they would close the store Christmas Eve and not open again until their return, March 15. Late holiday customers would enjoy coming in and hearing Jimmy Buffet playing in preparation to the Key West trip. To this day, at least once a week, customers ask if the family still goes to the Keys. That just shows you how long some folks have been coming to Goffle Brook Farm.

Today, Goffle Brook Farm is run by Richard and Dancy’s daughter Donna Dorsey, along with their son-in-law Kurt Dorsey. Although both parents are now deceased, the family traditions remain alive and well. Kurt and Donna have two boys, Clinton and Kyle and there’s reason to believe there might be a third generation running Goffle Brook Farm someday. The Dorsey’s say that is when they are going to really follow in Richard and Dancy’s footsteps … all the way to the Keys for the winter.


Perennials are often considered the heart of the garden due to how rewarding they are, year after year, as well as the fact that they offer an enormous variety of colors, sizes, habits, fragrances, and bloomtimes. They provide interest throughout any season of the year, for many, including winter. Most perennials have a deep, extensive root system, allowing them to tolerate dry spells and guard against erosion.

Not only are our plants of the highest quality, but you’ll also find rare and unique varieties here that are very difficult to find elsewhere. We’ve chosen many of them because they’ve shown superior disease or pest resistance and excellent performance in drought, heat, cold, or other stresses. Some have been selected because of exciting new bloom colors and forms or new sizes and habits that make them perfect for any garden.

At Goffle Brook Farms we encourage and offer many native plant species of New Jersey and Bergen County. Native plants not only add beauty to New Jersey yards, they offer important environmental and economic benefits. Native plants help conserve and filter water, provide habitat for native wildlife, protect soil resources, and reduce the costs and environmental impacts associated with fertilizers and pesticides. They also give us a “sense of place.” From the unique plant communities of the Pinelands to coastal salt marshes to the hardwood forests in the Highlands, New Jersey’s native plants make us feel at home.


More and more people are recognizing the benefits of buying locally grown foods. By choosing local fresh produce at a farmer’s market you can ask what practices were used to raise and harvest the crops. When you know where your food comes from and who grew it, you know a lot more about that food. According to the nonprofit organization Food-Routes, these benefits include:

Premium taste: Locally grown fruits and vegetables are usually sold within 24 hours of being harvested. Produce picked and eaten at the height of ripeness has exceptional flavor and, when handled properly, is packed with nutrients.

Maximum freshness: By choosing local produce at farm stands, farmers markets, pick-your-own farms and grocery stores, you pay for taste, not transportation and packaging.

Unique varieties: Local farmers often grow a large assortment of unique varieties of products to provide the most flavorful choices throughout the season.

Buying local also keeps farms and communities strong. Money spent by shoppers at local farms and by local farmers at local businesses stays in the community. Knowing your farmer can also help alleviate food safety concerns. It’s good business for everyone.


Home gardens take on many forms, from a few plants in containers to large garden plots in the backyard. Beyond the reward of homegrown produce, gardens provide health, environmental and enjoyment advantages for the gardener. The benefits of a home garden make the physical exertion and costs of gardening worth the effort.

Growing your own vegetable garden can do more than provide tasty produce—gardening can improve health, save money and even boost mood. Community gardens, backyard plots, and even window boxes are gaining in popularity, and tomatoes are among the first seeds new gardeners plant. Whole generations of Americans have never eaten homegrown tomatoes—never experienced the beefy taste, the grassy aroma, the juiciness, and the silken texture of tomatoes right off the vine.

Watching a seed blossom under your care to become food on your and your family’s plates is gratifying. Growing your own food is one of the most purposeful and important things a human can do—it’s work that directly helps you thrive, nourish your family, and maintain your health. Caring for your plants and waiting as they blossom and “fruit” before your eyes is an amazing sense of accomplishment!

Backyard gardening helps the planet in many ways. If you grow your food organically, without pesticides and herbicides, you’ll spare the earth the burden of unnecessary air and water pollution, for example. You’ll also reduce the use of fossil fuels and the resulting pollution that comes from the transport of fresh produce from all over the world.any garden.

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