Explore the Botanical World

HerbSpeak’s mission is to unravel the mystery of the botanical world, making plant knowledge accessible in everyday life.

What does that mean? As you read different terms and concepts, you will be introduced to a new, in-depth world to explore. Science does not have to be intimidating; by breaking down the language around it, you can freely explore the curiosities of life. Is a leaf ‘undulate’ or whacky-wavy-crazy? Both!

One answer is just a succinct way of describing it in the scientific language to convey direct meaning, while the other is approachable and understandable by most everyone. There’s no wrong answer when you stay curious and open-minded.

Whether you live next to the wild unknown, or if you are stuck in big-city traffic, plants are a part of our everyday lives. Once we recall what it’s like to live within our ecosystem, we can live more fulfilled and sustainable lives. It all starts with knowledge and curiosity.

Learn all about
Botany

The complexities of the natural world, broken down into simple concepts. There is magic in everyday life under the label of science.

Explore the world of
Gardening

Find care guides and tips for popular houseplants, become an intuitive grower, and explore nature in containers or in-ground gardens.

Expand your knowledge of the
Environment

We live in a diverse ecosystem where we each play a role in the health and stability of the environment. Learn what you can do here.

Calathea zebrina in the foreground, and Calathea lancifolia spotted in the background with their own darker leaf-like patterning.

Learn About the Botanical World Around You

On HerbSpeak, you’ll find topics from how plants work, to how they shape our environment. Plants are always evolving, growing, and shaping the world around us, and these organisms never cease to amaze, dazzle, and frighten.

While HerbSpeak is focused on the botanical, it’s important to remember that nothing exists in isolation. Plants one part of a complex web of life that connects you to the earth. With ecologically-minded learning, you’ll also find plenty of content about the rest of nature as well.

Are you ready to learn about plants? From the different varieties of plants and how to care for them to how basic plant functions work, and how to identify what’s in your backyard, this is where it all starts.

In the botanical world, learning never stops. There are up to 400,000 species of flowering plants alone, which can sound overwhelming at the beginning. The trick is to find what you are passionate about and begin exploring.
Browse the website to learn more about specific topics in bite-sized pieces.

The Origin of HerbSpeak

HerbSpeak was founded by Destynnie K. Berard (D.K. Berard) based on a love of the botanical world.

HerbSpeak’s mission is to make plants more accessible in everyday life, no matter where you live. We are all a part of one ecosystem, contributing to the cycle of life in our own way. By understanding the vast botanical world, we can better understand our own choices and actions, and how it affects our ecosystem.

With these articles and guides, you’ll join Destynnie on this botanical journey. Share what you are passionate about in the comments, come to an HerbSpeak event and say hello, and sign up for the newsletter for the latest news and updates.

Dracaena warneckii “Lemon Lime”

Curiosity is part of what makes us human. The drive to explore and learn is what pushes us to innovate and discover. Over time, you may just remember what it’s like to love learning. Re-discovering plants that many of us have been disconnected with is a long and personal journey, but it doesn’t have to be overwhelming. Let HerbSpeak act as a hub to give you a voice in this budding community.

The work you see on this website community-driven, which means you have an affect on the publications you see here. Every comment is replied to, every email is reviewed. If you don’t see something you’re interested in here, just send in the idea; you might even see it as the next top article! While the author is local to New England, plant-lovers from all over are welcome to explore and pitch ideas.

Most Recent Publication:

Understanding Beech Leaf Disease

The fate of the American Beech tree hangs in the balance, but the resilience of nature and the determination of those invested in its preservation offer a glimmer of hope.

Understanding the Parts of a Plant: The Root System

Roots are almost always underground, but these hidden systems are responsible for a range of functions from securing the plant in the soil to absorbing water and nutrients. You can think of the root system as the foundation of a building: it’s what keeps the plant stable, nourished, and capable of growth throughout its life cycle.

Understanding the Parts of a Plant and Their Functions: Introduction and Basic Terminology

Part one of an in-depth series. Getting your hands dirty in the garden or diving into botany can be a much richer experience when you understand the various parts of a plant and their functions.

The Ultimate Guide to Buying and Selecting Microgreens Seeds

Not only are they easy to grow, but they also pack a nutritious punch. However, before you start sprouting your first seed, you’ll need to know how to select the right seeds and determine the correct amount to use for your growing setup.

Botany
Understanding the Parts of a Plant: The Root System

Understanding the Parts of a Plant: The Root System

Roots are almost always underground, but these hidden systems are responsible for a range of functions from securing the plant in the soil to absorbing water and nutrients. You can think of the root system as the foundation of a building: it's what keeps the plant stable, nourished, and capable of growth throughout its life cycle.

Read More

Botany
Red Oak VS White Oak: A Beginner Botanist’s Guide

Red Oak VS White Oak: A Beginner Botanist’s Guide

You might think that an oak is an oak, and there’s nothing else to it – but as a beginner botanist or curious naturalist, you might start to take a second look at those trees, however, and notice that they are all different. Red and white oaks are not just individual trees, but separate groups that contain different species. Fortunately, there's an easy way to tell them apart...

Read More

Reviews
Review: The Green Planet by BBC Earth

Review: The Green Planet by BBC Earth

There is nothing not to love about the recent series from BBC Earth 'The Green Planet' narrated by David Attenborough. Originally airing in 2022, it was primarily celebrated in the UK as a groundbreaking series focused on the world from the perspective of plants. Unfortunately, it was not available in the United States, and as time went on, many of the potential audience forgot about this series. Now that it's available in the US - is it any good? Let's find out.

Read More

Botany
How Do Ferns Reproduce?

How Do Ferns Reproduce?

Ferns have captured the imagination of many scientists’, with many aspects of these unique plants becoming a dissertation research subject. Some people have even dedicated their lives to studying the subject, always finding more questions than answers. Without diving too deep into the weeds with this subject, how exactly do ferns reproduce? Let's find out...

Read More

Explore New Topics

There is so much on HerbSpeak for you to discover.

GARDENING

Gardening is good for the soul, and learning more about the different plants in your life is a valuable way to reconnect with nature.

Whether you are an indoor gardener exploring the world of houseplants or an outdoor gardener looking for some insight, you will find everything you need to know in this section. From plant profiles to nontoxic plants, urban farming, and much more. Discover the best in gardening in this section.

BOTANY

Explore the wild and colorful world around you through the deeper understanding provided by these botanical articles. Learn how wild plants alike move throughout the day, and the mechanisms that makes it possible for them to communicate with each other.

Discover science experiments, connect with flora on an intellectual level, and remember the joys of learning. These pieces dive further into the details about plants, helping foster a better understanding of this life form and how it interacts with the world.

What will your next discovery be?  Find out by exploring topics in this section.

ENVIRONMENT

Are you searching for ways to reconnect with your environment, or better understand the changing climate? Whether we remember to pay attention or not, the environment affects our everyday lives: our mood, appetite, and daily experience.

These articles are not only educational and engaging, spread across a variety of environmental topics. Learn about global water usage, how to identify the bees in your garden, or why pesticides are harmful to an ecosystem’s balance.

MICROGREENS

Microgreens are an up-and-coming nutritional food source that comes from plants that have just been germinated but have not been allowed to grow true leaves yet. You will be surprised at the differences in nutrition, with some microgreens containing 20-40x the nutrition of adult plants when tested on certain micro and macro nutrients.

In this section, you will learn everything you need to know about microgreens, from what they are to how to grow them. Thanks to your feedback, HerbSpeak is currently putting together a full course on how to grow microgreens, and it is continuously being shaped by your feedback. Have something to request or want to add your voice? Leave a comment in this section! Below, you can explore the latest Microgreens related in this area.

Above: an image from How To Use iNaturalist

REVIEWS

In this section, you’ll get an inside look into several different products, from gardening trays, to gardening gifts, bird feeders, and much more. Check out the most recent reviews and start learning about new tools and finding the best equipment.

This is a great place to start looking for a gift related to gardening or nature, or to upgrade your gardening equipment. Have something to say about a product that has been reviewed? Add your voice in the comments – the more reviews, the better! This section isn’t just about products, either. There’s plenty of opportunities in this section to learn about free-to-use tools and guides like cell phone apps, or books you can look for at your local library.

Popular Release:
How to Grow Ginseng

Enjoy more in-depth information about how to identify, grow, and harvest your own American ginseng crop in HerbSpeak’s new book: How to Grow Ginseng.

In this book, you’ll learn everything you need to know about growing ginseng – specifically American ginseng, Panax quinquefolius – and how to care for this wonderful plant from seed to harvest.

Beyond that, you’ll learn why such a small root has earned such an honorable reputation, and what you can do to help keep this plant in our lives no matter what your motivation for growing ginseng is.

Your journey into the world of ginseng starts here.

By D. K. Berard

Second Edition Pre-Orders coming soon!
Sign up for email alerts for an announcement or check back frequently.