The Plant Report- Every Plant Has A Story



Learn about the botanical world one plant at a time. The Plant Report is a new educational resource about plants, herbal medicine, ethnobotany and the human/plant relationship.  The Plant Report is a project of Sustainable World Radio.


  • Moringa- The Miracle Tree

    15/11/2014 Duration: 08min

    Moringa is called the Miracle Tree and after listening to this episode, you'll know why! Native to Africa and Asia, Moringa offers a plethora of benefits. Fast and easy to grow in the right climate (tropical and sub-tropical), Moringa is loaded with nutrients. Many parts of the Moringa are edible and/or medicinal, including the leaves, oil, bark and gum.  To learn about this marvelous tree, I spoke with plant expert and Permaculture designer Julious Piti. Based in Zimbabwe, Julious is the founder of PORET, an organization that supports farmers in dryland areas and works to address hunger, malnutrition, and poverty.  Click Here to listen to a longer interview about the Real Green Revolution in Africa with the inspiring Julious Piti.  For those listeners who don't live in a sub-tropical or tropical climate, I'm growing two healthy Moringa trees in a Mediterranean climate. I've heard of people in colder areas who grow Moringa outside in warmer months and in green houses when it's cool. 

  • Outdoor Mushroom Cultivation

    17/09/2014 Duration: 29min

    In this episode of The Plant Report, we talk with Michael Judd about outdoor mushroom cultivation. Growing mushrooms at home is fun, surprisingly easy and offers multiple benefits including a delicious medicinal crop, increased mycelium in your soil and mycoremediation opportunities. In the interview, Michael talks about different growing techniques, including log and mulch cultivation and walks you through everything you need to know to start your first backyard (or patio) mushroom crop! Michael Judd is a Permaculture designer, teacher, author of Edible Landscaping With A Permaculture Twist and all around Fun-gi. He's just launched a campaign to help fund his new book- A Guide To Backyard Mushroom Growing.  If you'd like to learn more, check out Michael's Kickstarter campaign by clicking here or visit his website,

  • Hala- The Hawaiian PVC Pipe

    24/08/2014 Duration: 11min

    We met with farmer and Hawaiian plant expert John Aquino on the beautiful grounds of the Maui Nui Botanical Gardens located on the island of Maui. In this episode, John talks about the many uses of Hala- Pandanus tectorius. Hala can be woven into floor mats, canoe sails, and baskets. Hala is a famine food, has male and female trees and its trunk can be used for irrigation. John calls Hala- the Hawaiian PVC Pipe!  To schedule a tour of Maui Nui Botanical Gardens click here.  Maui Nui Botanical Gardens is the only botanical garden in the state of Hawaii located on a coastal dune system that features native Hawaiian coastal and dry forest plants. Their  

  • Feijoa- An Affable Edible Plant

    13/07/2014 Duration: 18min

    Feijoa, Acca sellowiana, popularly known as pineapple guava is an easy to grow shrub with beautiful edible flowers and fruit that tastes like the tropics. To learn more about this delicious temperate sub-tropical plant, I spoke with Mark Albert, an expert in all things Feijoa. Mark Albert is a naturalist and rare fruit grower who specializes in self-sufficient year-round food production. 

  • Bunya-Bunya Tree

    19/05/2014 Duration: 17min

    The Bunya-Bunya (Araucaria bidwillii) is a tall, evergreen coniferous tree with large, edible and high carbohydrate nuts. In this Plant Report, Permaculture designer and horticulturist Byron Joel talks with Jill Cloutier about the Bunya-Bunya; its growing habits, history and untapped potential as a perennial staple crop. (Just watch out for those bowling ball sized falling cones!)

  • Goumi- A Beautiful Bush With Benefits

    01/04/2014 Duration: 13min

    Goumi is an attractive shrub that is useful in edible landscaping. Renowned for its beauty and delicious medicinal berries, goumi is easy to grow, drought tolerant and fixes nitrogen- making it a valuable soil amender. Goumi's fragrant cream colored flowers attract pollinators, birds and people to your garden.  To learn more about goumi, Jill Cloutier spoke with Michael Judd, Permaculturist and author of the new book Edible Landscaping With A Permaculture Twist-How To Have Your Yard And Eat It Too. Michael is a big fan of the goumi and its many benefits.  (Photo of goumi courtesy of Michael Judd.)  

  • Arracacha- The Peruvian Parsnip

    17/03/2014 Duration: 16min

    Arracacha, Arracacia xanthorrhiza, is a perennial vegetable from the Andes. To learn more about this staple food crop I spoke with Permaculturist and plant expert Byron Joel. Delicious in flavor, Arracacha is a member of the Apiaceae family and is easy to grow and propagate. High in nutritional content the root can be roasted or pureed and makes an excellent soup. Plant some Arracacha today not only for yourself, but also for all of the beneficial insects that this plant will attract to your garden. 

  • Ashitaba- Nature's Super Food

    23/02/2014 Duration: 09min

    Ashitaba is a plant rich in antioxidants, vitamins and chlorophyll. Also called Tomorrow's Leaf, Ashitaba is known for its quick regeneration and healing properties. To learn more about Ashitaba, Jill Cloutier interviewed John Glavis of Botierra Biodiversity Farms at the Heirloom Expo Heirloom Expo in Santa Rosa, California. 

  • Titan Arum-The Largest Unbranched Inflorescence In The World!

    12/01/2014 Duration: 18min

    Titan Arum may have one of the smelliest flowers on the planet (think old gym socks), but it's also one of the largest and most beautiful. Known as the carrion or corpse flower, Titan Arum gives off a pungent scent that's perfect for attracting flies, beetles and other decomposers. Native to Sumatra, Titan Arum rarely blooms in the wild or in captivity and is a threatened species. I was lucky enough to see, smell and spend some time with a Titan Arum named Chanel at the University of California's Biology Greenhouse. In this episode I speak with Danica Taber, Biology Greenhouse Manager about this famous plant that has its own Facebook page and thousands of fans! 

  • Comfrey- A Plant With Many Uses

    28/12/2013 Duration: 11min

    Comfrey (Symphytum officinale) is a gardener's friend. A plant with many benefits, comfrey can be used as medicine, mulch, liquid fertilizer, compost and chicken feed. Comfrey has a deep tap root that can mine the soil for nutrients and minerals. Used in herbal medicine for thousands of years, comfrey is said to help heal wounds and bruises. In this episode, Permaculture teacher and farmer Julious Piti talks about comfrey and how to use it. 

  • Nature's Medicine Chest- Elder (Sambucus)

    22/04/2013 Duration: 15min

    Known as the Tree of Music and Nature's Medicine Chest, Elder has a long history of medicinal and musical use. Elderberries and flowers are a popular herbal remedy and elder branches can be used to make musical instruments. Steeped in folklore, Elder is revered in many cultures. To learn more about Elder we speak with environmental educator and natural dye and fiber expert Rebecca Burgess and herbalist Lanny Kaufer about this remarkably useful and healing plant. 

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