Mike McGrath

Mike McGrath

Garden Editor


The Short Take

Mike McGrath is:

  • Host of the nationally syndicated Public Radio show, You Bet Your Garden
  • Garden Editor for WTOP News Radio in Washington, DC
  • Contributing Editor and columnist for Greenprints magazine
  • Former Editor-in-Chief of ORGANIC GARDENING magazine
  • Author of books on Tomatoes, Compost, Seed saving and Kitchen Gardening

The Details…

Since 1999, Mike McGrath has been Garden Editor for WTOP, the top rated, all-news radio station in Washington, D.C. He appears live every Friday morning as the “Yard Warrior” at around 8:50 am and then his witty, one-minute “Garden Plot” segments air on Saturday at 43 minutes after the hour, from 5:43 a.m. thru 5:43 p.m. You can read the written versions of The Garden Plot.

Mike is also host of the nationally syndicated weekly Public Radio show You Bet Your Garden. An hour of “chemical-free horticultural hijinks”, YBYG airs every Saturday morning at 11 on it’s originating station, WHYY-FM (90.9) in Philadelphia, and at various times on other Public Radio stations across the nation. YBYG also airs on the ‘NPR Talk’ channel (#135) on Sirius satellite radio at 7 a.m. and 3 p.m. EST Saturdays and again Sunday mornings at 7 a.m. EST. The YBYG “Question of the Week”, featuring a detailed examination of a gardening or pest control problem, appears in print at the Gardens Alive website, which also hosts a list of stations that carry the show and an alphabetized archive covering hundreds of Mike’s gardening and pest control topics.

“You Bet Your Garden” is also the name of Mike’s column in the quarterly gardening publication Greenprints (“The Weeder’s Digest”), appearing in every issue since 1998. Here’s a direct link to a sample column.

Mike was Editor-In-Chief of ORGANIC GARDENING magazine from February 1991 through December 1997, during which it was the largest circulation gardening magazine in the world. In 1993, ORGANIC GARDENING received the Editorial Excellence award from Folio: magazine, and in 1995 was proclaimed “the most popular magazine in America” by Media Dynamics after research and survey data revealed it to be the magazine: 1) most saved by its readers (more than National Geographic!); 2) most often read from cover to cover; and 3) the one readers would miss most if it ceased publication.

With McGrath serving as Chairman, ORGANIC GARDENING became a major exhibitor at the prestigious Philadelphia Flower Show, with the magazine capturing four consecutive “Best of Show” awards from 1993 to 1997. Mike continues to lecture at The Show every year.

From 1993 through 1997, Mike was the regular gardening expert on the weekend edition of The Today Show, Saturday mornings on NBC. He has also appeared on Nova, Good Morning America, CBS This Morning, PBS Healthweek, CNN, FOX, and as a regular contributor on the weekly PBS TV series “Your Organic Garden” and The Discovery Channel’s “Home Matters”.

His most recent publication is The Kitchen Garden Box; Save & Sow Seeds of Your Favorite Vegetables, a special boxed set of instructional cards and seed saving envelopes (Quirk Publishing; Spring 2009). His previous works include Mike McGrath’s Book of Compost (Sterling Publishers; 2006); Kitchen Garden A to Z (Abrams; 2004—sadly, now out of print) and You Bet Your Tomatoes! (Rodale; 2002, and now reissued in a brand new edition from Plain White Press in 2009).

Mike also edited The Best of OG (Rodale; 1995); co- authored Save Three Lives: A Plan For Famine Prevention, with Robert Rodale (Sierra Club Books; 1991); and complied The Best of the Worst, with Marvel Comics’ Stan Lee (Harper & Row; 1979/Rhino reissue; 1994).

McGrath was Entertainment Editor of Philadelphia’s weekly alternative newspaper The Drummer, and Editor of the associated college paper The Daily Planet in the mid 1970s, and wrote countless feature articles for The Philadelphia Inquirer and The Philadelphia Daily News in the 70s and 80s. He also enjoyed two brief stints at Marvel Comics: As editor of their British line (“The Mighty World of Marvel”) circa 1971 and as a writer and editor in the ‘Marvel Bullpen’ in 1979.

He joined Rodale Press as an Editor in their book division in 1984, launched Allergy Relief Newsletter (Executive Editor; ’85 -’88), and then served as Executive Editor of Men Health (the newsletter from which the hugely successful magazine would later spring) for two years before taking the helm of ORGANIC GARDENING.

Mike slays slugs, plays pinball, enjoys baseball, grows way too many tomatoes and will not eat lima beans, no matter how much you pay him.


You Bet Your Garden® is a Registered Trademark of Mike McGrath Enterprises, Inc.

Contact: Mike McGrath Enterprises, Inc.

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