A porous, wood-fiber-based cushioning material for packaging was prepared in this study using poplar fiber and wood powder raw materials as an environmentally friendly resource. Water, the foaming agent azodicarbonamide and sodium bicarbonate, starch, and nucleating agent French chalk were used as additives, and the ingredients were subjected to hot-press molding. The effects of the initial water content on the foaming quality and mechanical properties of the plant fiber porous cushioning materials were explored. The results showed that the initial water content had a substantial influence on the foaming quality and mechanical properties of plant fiber porous buffer materials. When the initial water content was 69.3%, the initial embryo viscosity was the most suitable for bubble growth, and the porosity, pore size, and distribution of the samples were optimal. Furthermore, the mechanical properties of the samples were the strongest. The foaming mechanism of the plant fiber porous cushioning material was similar to the foaming mechanism of a polymer foaming material. Thus, the embryo viscosity had the greatest influence on the bubble growth process.