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'Landmark' Roxbury Garden Center Closes; New Operators Possible

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Dering's Garden Center in Succasunna
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Aerial view of Dering's Garden Center Credits: Roxbury Township
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ROXBURY, NJ – Dering’s Garden Supply, a fixture of the Route 10 corridor in Succasunna, has shut down after more than six decades in business.

Dering’s, a popular source for plants, flowers, Christmas Trees and many other necessities for those with green thumbs, announced the closure earlier this month.

“After 65 years of business we will be retiring and closing Dering's Garden Supply,” said a post on the company’s Facebook page. “It has been a pleasure serving the community. We are grateful to have had so many valued customers over the years. Thank you for your patronage.”

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A similar message, on an answering machine, is given to those who phone the establishment.

But Roxbury gardeners who liked the convenience of the 125 Route 10 business need not lament too much; the site is expected to continue as a garden center with a new proprietor.

That’s according to Ledgewood lawyer Edward Dunne. He represents Sam Maddali, the owner of nearby Valley Pharmacy, who – operating as Maddali Investments LLC – recently bought from the Derings the 1.35-acre property.

“It’s going to continue to be a garden center,” Dunne said. “Sam acquired it, under a different company name, and it’s going to be leased.”

Dunne said the lease deal has yet to be completed, so he did not want to reveal the name of those who will be operating the new garden center. He said the new operators have no plans to drastically alter the site, although they are going to change the name and make some “cosmetic changes.”

Maddali, who did not return a message, paid $750,000 for the property, according to public records. The Derings also could not be reached for comment.

Everybody Went There

“I’ve known the Derings for many years,” Dunne said. “They’ve been there for a long, long time, as long as I can remember … It’s like a landmark. Everybody goes there for plants. I’ve purchased many items there; flowers, bushes, trees. They’ve been very helpful over the years, a nice family.”

Dunne said the garden center is "sort of an icon for the town" that was started before Roxbury instituted zoning. Nevertheless, the new operators will need to get township approval before opening the proposed garden center, said Roxbury Land Use Administrator Eugenia Wiss.

The site is now part of the township's B-2 (Highway Business District) zone. The principal uses allowed in that zone are restaurants with drive-through lanes, lumber yards, theaters and cinemas and all uses allowed in the B-1 (Limited Business District) zone. The B-1 zone specifically excludes "garden centers and plant nurseries."

"We will pull the old files out and see what kind of prior approvals they had there," Wiss said. "We have to do the research. There are a lot of businesses that have been around forever and they have grown, changed and evolved without zoning permission."

 

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