Hey Karin, Have you figured this out yet? I keep thinking about it. I come across books that have a part similar to what you remember, but not all of it. This part:
I think when they first landed they started exploring the vegetation and they experimented with tasting different things and saw strange reactions when the touched and ate them, so they began to catalog everything. I believe one of the members of the team was a botanist or biology specialist, while another was a language specialist and interacted with the planet's inhabitants to find a way to communicate with them. I am pretty sure that at least one or two members of the team died from some kind of clash with the biology/culture of the planet.
reminds me of Hurricane Moon by Alexis Glynn Latner, except there's no recognizable inhabitants on that planet. I reviewed it here
. And the energy flow sounds familiar too (in fact I use something like it in the fantasy novel I'm writing).