Episode 14: Featuring Poet and Master Naturalist Kai Coggin, Ecological Horticulturist & Designer Rebecca McMackin and Botanist & Cultural Ecologist Jared Rosenbaum

Episode 14 is now available on Spotify,
Apple, Google, and Amazon

The WildStory: A Podcast of Poetry and Plants
by the Native Plant Society of New Jersey

Hosted by Ann E. Wallace, PhD
Poet Laureate of Jersey City

Co-host Kim Correro,
Rutgers Master Gardener and Director of State Programs

Special Contributor Dr. Randi Eckel
Entomologist and Vice President of Membership NPSNJ

Do you have a question about native plants for Randi?

In episode 14, Kai Coggin, Poet Laureate of Hot Springs, Arkansas and host of Wednesday Night Poetry (0:02:56) , talks with Ann Wallace about her new book Mother of Other Kingdoms, published in April 2024 by Harbor Editions. Kai speaks about the many ways in which the tender act of mothering living things, whether wild or human, has enriched her life and provides sustaining lessons on finding joy and wonder through difficult times.

In Ask Randi, Dr. Randi Eckel, the native plant expert for NPSNJ and owner of Toadshade Wildflower Farm, (0:35:34) explains why native Jewelweed is hard to find for sale. She then answers a listener question from Maude about how we define local when purchasing native plants. Randi also makes a special announcement about the September trip to Cape May for NPSNJ members.

Kim Correro then speaks with Rebecca McMackin (0:45:41) about the power of ecological horticulture in creating a more just and equitable world. Rebecca discusses the emotional and physical benefits of living in a thriving ecosystem, and offers that access to beauty should be a human right. She wraps up by sharing tips on the importance of knowing how to water your plants and why fall is the ideal planting season. We encourage you to sign up for Rebecca’s free NEWSLETTER, which is filled with valuable information for gardeners. Don’t forget to check out her TED Talk “Let Your Garden Grow Wild” with almost one million views!

To close out the episode, Kim and Ann talk with Jared Rosenbaum, botanist and co-owner of Wild Ridge Plants in New Jersey (1:09:24). We speak about cultural ecology and Jared’s YouTube series ROOTED. Each episode features one wild plant species, sparking stories about place, history, and future prospects. In the upcoming season, they span the state of New Jersey to feature Prickly Pear Cactus, Purple Milkweed, and more. Rooted is a recipient of a 2024 NPSNJ Mini-Grant.