Dermot O'Neill (gardener)

Dermot O'Neill is an Irish gardener[1] and editor of Garden Heaven magazine.[2] He has appeared on several radio and television programmes for RTÉ and BBC Northern Ireland and has contributed regular columns for Irish newspapers and magazines including the RTÉ Guide, The Irish Times, Northern Ireland Homes & Lifestyle and the Sunday Independent.


O'Neill worked at the Marlfield Garden Centre in Cabinteely, Dublin, before moving to the University College Dublin horticultural unit.

In 1982 he began to appear on RTÉ children's programmes, before presenting a gardening segment on Live at Three.[3] O'Neill has also appeared on The Garden Show, and has presented on gardening within the magazine show Open House, and on Today With Pat Kenny. He is a regular horticultural contributor to the Mooney show with Derek Mooney on RTÉ Radio 1.

O'Neill has been a guest on The Restaurant [4] and the travel show Time On Their Hands.

In 2007, he launched Garden Show Ireland at the walled garden at Hillsborough Castle.[5]

In 2008, O'Neill appeared on the St. Patrick's Day episode of The Oprah Winfrey Show.


O'Neill served on the council of the Royal Horticultural Society of Ireland and is a founding committee member of the Irish Garden Plant Society.[6] In 2016, Mount Congreve House Gardens announced that a new variety of the Magnolia plant, one of O'Neill's favourite flowers, would be named Magnolia campbellii 'Dermot O'Neill' in his honour.[7]

Personal life

O'Neill grew up in Blackrock, Dublin. His maternal grandmother was from Limerick. He was educated at C.B.C. Monkstown Park.

In the summer of 2009, O'Neill was diagnosed with cancer.[8] Initially thought to be a recurrence of a previous stomach ulcer, O'Neill was later diagnosed with stomach cancer and non-Hodgkin lymphoma. He was treated at Beacon Hospital, Beaumont Hospital, and St. Vincent's Private Hospital.[6][8] O'Neill spent almost 6 months at St. Vincent's and underwent chemotherapy under the care of Prof. John Crown.[8] O'Neill has been cancer free since 2011.[9]

After his recovery, O'Neill completed an RTÉ TV series, Dermot's Secret Gardan, about his health problems and renovations of his Victorian walled garden in Clondeglass, Co. Laois.[6][10][11]

He is a patron of the homeless charity Threshold.


  • Roses Revealed (Kyle Cathie) April 1, 2007 ISBN 1-85626-654-0
  • Discover Gardening (Poolbeg Publishing) October 29, 2004 ISBN 1-84223-184-7
  • Dermot Gardens (Poolbeg Publishing) January 2003 ISBN 1-84223-065-4
  • Gardening tips (TownHouse & CountryHouse) October 19, 2002 ISBN 1-86059-166-3
  • Creative Gardening with Dermot O'Neill (Gill & Macmillan Ltd) November 1990 ISBN 0-7171-1813-4


  1. "About Dermot: Biography". Retrieved 2018-07-02.
  2. Garden Heaven official site Archived 2008-04-06 at the Wayback Machine
  3. "Seeds of change -". Retrieved 2018-07-02.
  4. "RTÉ Television - The Restaurant". RTÉ. 2012. Archived from the original on 2016-08-06. Retrieved 2018-07-02.
  5. Garden Show Ireland official site Archived 2008-04-21 at the Wayback Machine
  6. "'I cried when I learned I had cancer' - Dermot -". Retrieved 2018-07-02.
  7. "Magnolia for ya! A bloomin' honour for Dermot O'Neill". 2016-04-08. Retrieved 2018-07-02.
  8. "Courageous Dermot to share cancer fight in revealing TV diary -". Retrieved 2018-07-02.
  9. "Third Age: All is now rosy in the garden". 2013-02-24. Retrieved 2018-07-02.
  10. "Gardener's 'private' paradise". Retrieved 2018-07-02.
  11. Taylor, Richie (21 February 2011). "I howled when I was told I had cancer ..but my garden gave me a sense of purpose; PROJECT HELPS DISEASE FIGHT. - Free Online Library". The Mirror. Retrieved 2018-07-02.
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