Home / Preservation & Taphonomy /
Taphonomy in General
Plant Fossil Preservation and Plant Taphonomy
Collecting Bias: Our Incomplete Picture of the Past Vegetation
Three-Dimensionally Preserved Plant Compression Fossils
Pith Cast and "in situ" Preservation
Bacterial Biofilms (Microbial Mats)
Upland and Hinterland Floras
Abscission and Tissue Separation in Fossil and Extant Plants
Leaf Litter and Plant Debris
Log Jams and Driftwood Accumulations
Wound Response in Trees
Fungal Wood Decay: Evidence from the Fossil Record
! Cellulose Peel Technique@
! Tree-Ring Research (Dendrochronology) in General@
! The Pros and Cons of Pre-Neogene Growth Rings@
Teaching Documents about Wood Anatomy and Tree-Ring Research@
! University of Aberdeen: The Rhynie Chert Flora. See also The Biota of Early Terrestrial Ecosystems: The Rhynie Chert. A learning resource website.
N.F. Adams et al. (2016):
and virtual taphonomy resolve the first Cissus
(Vitaceae) macrofossils from Africa as early-diverging
members of the genus. Free access,
American Journal of Botany, 103: 1657–1677.
"... Virtual taphonomy explained how complex mineral infill processes concealed key seed features, causing the previous taxonomic misidentification. ..."
! J. Alleon et al. (2016): Early entombment within silica minimizes the molecular degradation of microorganisms during advanced diagenesis. In PDF, Chemical Geology, 437: 98–108. See also here.
L.I. Anderson and M. Taylor (2008): Charles W. Peach, Palaeobotany and Scotland (in PDF). The Geological Curator. Thin sections of Devonian plants!
! Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona (U.S. Department of the Interior). Go to: Fossils. Plant and animal fossils representing the Late Triassic. See also: W.G. Parker and Sid Ash: Linnaean taxonomy of Late Triassic Plants of Petrified Forest National Park, and Late Triassic Pollen found in Petrified Forest National Park. By W.G. Parker, data compiled from Dunay and Fisher (1984), Litwin (1986), and Litwin et al., (1991).
Loren E. Babcock et al. (2006): Starting on PDF page 4:
The "Preservation Paradox": Microbes as a
Key to Exceptional Fossil Preservation in the
Kirkpatrick Basalt (Jurassic), Antarctica. PDF file, The Sedimentary Record, 4. See also
Silica-rich hydrothermal water apparently worked to fossilize organic remains rapidly and produce a "freeze-frame" of macroscopic and microscopic life forms. Microbes seem to have played a vital role in this processes.
! C. Ballhaus et al. (2012): The silicification of trees in volcanic ash - An experimental study. Abstract, Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 84. See also here (in PDF).
! M. Bardet and A. Pournou (2017): NMR Studies of Fossilized Wood. Abstract, Annual Reports on NMR Spectroscopy, 90: 41–83. See also here and there (Google books).
S. Bengtson et al. (2017): Three-dimensional preservation of cellular and subcellular structures suggests 1.6 billion-year-old crown-group red algae. Open Access, PLoS Biol., 15: e2000735.
J.A. Bergene (2012): Dordrechtites arcanus, an anatomically preserved gymnospermous reproductive structure from the Middle Triassic of Antarctica. In PDF, thesis, University of Kansas.
The University of California Museum of Paleontology, Berkeley: Localities of the Devonian: Rhynie Chert, Scotland. Section through a fossilized stem of Aglaophyton major.
A.C. Bippus et al. (2019):
fern rhizomes as a model system for exploring epiphyte community structure across geologic
time: evidence from Patagonia. Open access,
PeerJ., 7: e8244.
Note figure 2E: Coprolite-filled gallery in osmundaceous leaf base.
! R.T. Bolzon et al. (2004):
de lenhos do Mesozóico do Estado do Rio Grande do Sul, Brasil. PDF file,
in Portuguese. Revista Brasileira de Paleontologia, 7: 103-110.
About wood fossil diagenesis, e.g. the preservation of the cells of fossil wood, the form of wood mineralization, especially the silicification of wood.
B. Bomfleur et al. (2015): Osmunda pulchella sp. nov. from the Jurassic of Sweden - reconciling molecular and fossil evidence in the phylogeny of modern royal ferns (Osmundaceae). In PDF, BMC Evolutionary Biology, 5. See also here.
Mariana Brea et al. (2009): Darwin forest at agua de la zorra: the first in situ forest discovered in South America by Darwin in 1835. PDF file, Revista de la Asociación Geológica Argentina, 64: 21-31. Fossil tree stumps in growth position.
Mariana Brea et al. (2008): Ecological reconstruction of a mixed Middle Triassic forest from Argentina. PDF file, Alcheringa, 32: 365-393. See also here.-The Darwin Forest consists of 120 stumps in life position!
! D.E.G. Briggs (2003): The role of decay and mineralization in the preservation of soft-bodied fossils. Abstract, Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences, 31: 275-301.
H. Brunner and K.-P. Kelber (1988):
im württembergisch-fränkischen Unterkeuper -
Bemerkungen zum fossilen Environment. PDF file, in German.
In: Hagdorn, H. (ed.): Neue Forschungen zur Erdgeschichte von Crailsheim.
Sonderbände d. Ges. f. Naturk. in Württemberg, 1: 185-205.
Anatomical views of the Triassic horsetail Neocalamites merianii in pyrite/goethite preservation.
! Susan H. Butts and Derek E.G. Briggs (2011): Silicification Through Time. Abstract.
The Petrified Forest, Calistoga, California.
K.A. Campbell et al. (2015): Geyserite in Hot-Spring Siliceous Sinter: Window on Earth's Hottest Terrestrial (Paleo)environment and its Extreme Life. In PDF, Astrobiology, 15: 858-882. See also here (abstract).
! A. Channing and D. Edwards (2013): Wetland megabias: ecological and ecophysiological filtering dominates the fossil record of hot spring floras. In PDF, Palaeontology, 56: 523–556. See also here (abstract).
! A. Channing and D. Edwards (2004): Experimental taphonomy: silicification of plants in Yellowstone hot-spring environments. In PDF, Transactions of the Royal Society of Edinburgh: Earth Sciences, 94, 503-521. Snapshot taken by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.
B. Chauviré et al. (2020): Arthropod entombment in weathering-formed opal: new horizons for recording life in rocks. Open access, Scientific Reports, 10.
! Museum of Natural History Chemnitz, Germany. Go to: Paläontologische Sammlung. Palaeobotany and petrified wood collection (in German).
Don Chesnut, Geology Department, University of Kentucky: Geology and fossils in Kentucky and adjacent states. Scroll to: "Upper Path Fork coal balls, 1980". Worth checking out: Cordaite with growth rings (peel made by Tom Phillips).
Adele Conover, Smithsonian magazine: The Object at Hand. From a forest that flourished 207 million years ago, the Sherman Logs bear stony witness to a general´s curiosity, and life in an age gone by.
E. Couradeau et al.(2013): Cyanobacterial calcification in modern microbialites at the submicrometer scale. In PDF.
Stadtmuseum im Spital, Crailsheim, Germany: Exhibition about petrified Triassic wood: "Aus Holz wird Stein Kieselhölzer aus dem Keuper Frankens" June 28 - September 20, 2009. (In German). See also here (Amazon book announcement), and there (book announcement, in German).
G.T. Creber & S.R. Ash (2004): The Late Triassic Schilderia adamanica and Woodworthia arizonica Trees of the Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona, USA. Abstract, Palaeontology Volume 47: 21. See also here (in PDF).
John D. Curtis, Biology Department, University of Wisconsin; Nels R. Lersten, Department of Botany, Iowa State University, and Michael D. Nowak, Biology Department, University of Wisconsin: Photographic Atlas of Plant Anatomy. Go to: Curtis, Lersten, and Nowak 2002, Petrified Wood.
A.-L. Decombeix et al. (2011): Root suckering in a Triassic conifer from Antarctica: Paleoecological and evolutionary implications. In PDF, American Journal of Botany, 98: 1222-1225. See also here (abstract).
! G. De Lafontaine et al. (2011): Permineralization process promotes preservation of Holocene macrofossil charcoal in soils. Abstract, Journal of Quaternary Science, 26. See also here (in PDF).
D. Dietrich et al. (2015): Petrifactions and wood-templated ceramics: Comparisons between natural and artificial silicification. Abstract IAWA Journal, 36. See also here (in PDF).
! D. Dietrich et al. (2013): A microstructure study on silicified wood from the Permian Petrified Forest of Chemnitz. In PDF, Paläontologische Zeitschrift. See also here.
Dagmar Dietrich et al. (2000): Analytical X-Ray Microscopy on Psaronius sp.: A Contribution to Permineralization Process Studies. Abstract, Mikrochim. Acta, 133: 279-283.
Thomas A. Dillhoff, Pasco, Washington (article hosted by Evolving Earth Foundation Issaquah, WA). Fossil Forests of Eastern Washington.
N. Dotzler et al. (2011): Sphenophyllum (Sphenophyllales) leaves colonized by fungi from the Upper Pennsylvanian Grand-Croix cherts of central France. Zitteliana 51. Go to PDF page 3.
I.H. Escapa et al. (2013): Pararaucaria delfueyoi sp. nov. from the Late Jurassic Cañadón Calcáreo Formation, Chubut, Argentina: insights into the evolution of the Cheirolepidiaceae. In PDF, Int. J. Plant Sci., 174: 458-470.
I.H. Escapa et al. (2011): Seed cone anatomy of Cheirolepidiaceae (Coniferales): Reinterpreting Pararaucaria patagonica Wieland. In PDF, Am. J. Bot., 99: 1058-1068.
EurekAlert: Want to petrify wood without waiting a few million years? Try this. Pacific Northwest National Laboratory scientists can mineralize wood in record time. Wood that was artificially petrified in days.
M. Farahimanesh et al. (2014): The fern Stauropteris oldhamia Binney: New data on branch development and adaptive significance of the hypodermal aerenchyma. In PDF, C. R. Palevol., 13: 473–481.
M. Frese et al. (2017):
of Jurassic fossils from the Talbragar Fish Bed using fluorescence, photoluminescence,
and elemental and mineralogical mapping.
PLoS ONE 12(6): e0179029.
"... Closer inspection of a plant leaf (Pentoxylon australicum White, 1981) establishes fluorescence as a useful tool for the visualisation of anatomical details that are difficult to see under normal light conditions".
J. Galtier et al. (1992): Anatomically preserved conifer-like stems from the upper Carboniferous of England. In PDF, Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological sciences, 247. See also here.
Greb, S.F., Eble, C.F., Chesnut, D.R., Jr., Phillips, T.L., and Hower, J.C.: An in situ occurrence of coal balls in the Amburgy coal bed, Pikeville Formation (Duckmantian), Central Appalachian Basin, U.S.A. Palaios, v. 14, p. 433-451; 1999. See also here (via wayback).
Michael J. Everhart, Sternberg Museum of Natural History,
Fort Hays State University:
OCEANS OF KANSAS -
A Natural History of the Western Interior Sea (Indiana University Press, 2005),
borings (teredo) in wood.
Website saved by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.
J. Farmer (1999): Articel starts on page 94, PDF page 110:
Modes in Microbial Fossilization. In PDF;
In: Proceedings of the Workshop on Size Limits of
Very Small Organisms, Space Studies Board, National
Research Council, National Academies Press, Washington,
Snapshot taken by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.
Giraud Foster & Norman Barker, Ancient Microworld:
Photo Gallery. Some
Click on an image to view an enlarged version. See also:
Snapshots provided by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.
! J. Garcia-Guinea et al. (1998): Cell-Hosted Pyrite Framboids in Fossil Woods. In PDF, Naturwissenschaften 85, 78–81.
! J. García Massini et al. (2012): First report of fungi and fungus-like organisms from Mesozoic hot springs. In PDF, Palaios, 27: 55–62.
This is one of the internet´s leading websites for earth science news and information. Go to:
What is Petrified Wood? How Does it Form?
David R. Greenwood, Zoology Dept., Brandon University, Manitoba, Canada: Mummified tree stumps on Axel Heiberg Island, Canada (PDF file).
J. Götze et al. (2013): Optical microscope-cathodoluminescence (OM–CL) imaging as a powerful tool to reveal internal textures of minerals. In PDF.
! J. Götze et al. (2008): Silicification of wood in the laboratory. In PDF, Ceramics, 52: 268-277.
Stephen Jay Gould (findarticles): The sharp-eyed lynx, outfoxed by nature. (Part 2) (observations of fossil wood by Francesco Stelluti). Natural History, June, 1998.
D.M. Guido et al. (2010): Jurassic geothermal landscapes and fossil ecosystems at San Agustín, Patagonia, Argentina. In PDF, Journal of the Geological Society, 167: 11-20.
E.L. Gulbranson et al. (2012): Permian polar forests: deciduousness and environmental variation. In PDF, Geobiology, 10: 479-495.
Calvin & Rosanna Hamilton, ScienceViews.com: Petrified Wood Colors and Petrification
C.J. Harper et al. (2018): Fungal sporulation in a Permian plant fragment from Antarctica. In PDF, Bulletin of Geosciences, 93: 13–26. Czech Geological Survey, Prague.
Xiaoyuan He et al. (2010): Anatomically Preserved Marattialean Plants from the Upper Permian of Southwestern China: The Trunk of Psaronius laowujiensis sp. nov. PDF file, Int. J. Plant Sci., 171: 662-678.
A.B. Heckert and S.G. Lucas (2002): Revised Upper Triassic stratigraphy of the Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona, USA. In PDF, NM Mus. Nat. Hist. Sci. Bull.
Paul V. Heinrich, Louisiana Fossil Page: Common Animal and Plant Fossils of Louisiana, Louisiana Petrified Wood, and Petrified Palm Wood.
! J. Hellawell et al. (2015): Incipient silicification of recent conifer wood at a Yellowstone hot spring. In PDF, Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 149: 79-87. See also here (abstract).
E. Hermsen et al. (2007): Cycads from the Triassic of Antarctica: Permineralized cycad leaves. Int. J. Plant Sci., 168: 1099-1112.
L.A. Hoffman and A.M.F. Tomescu (2013): An early origin of secondary growth: Franhueberia gerriennei gen. et sp. nov. from the Lower Devonian of Gaspé (Quebec, Canada). In PDF, American Journal of Botany, 100: 754-763.
G. Holzhüter et al. (2003):
of silica in Equisetum arvense. In PDF,
Anal. Bioanal. Chem., 376: 512-517.
Provided by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.
Houston Gem and Mineral Society:
Petrified Wood Articles
by HGMS Authors and Others.
Hunterian Museum, University of Glasgow: Scottish Geology,
This expired link is now available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.
August Ilg, Alfred Selmeier and Madelaine Böhme: The fossil wood database (FWDS). Fossil wood from Central Europe, Triassic to the Pleistocene. Specimen chiefly from the Bayerische Staatssammlung für Paläontologie und historische Geologie München, the Naturmuseum Augsburg and the private collection P. Holleis.
E.C. Jeffrey (1917): Petrified Coals and Their Bearing on the Problem of the Origin of Coals. PDF file, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 3: 206–211.
! K.-P. Kelber, Würzburg (2007): Die Erhaltung und paläobiologische Bedeutung der fossilen Hölzer aus dem süddeutschen Keuper (Trias, Ladinium bis Rhätium).- In German. PDF file, 33 MB! pp. 37-100; In: Schüßler, H. & Simon, T. (eds.): Aus Holz wird Stein. Kieselhölzer aus dem Keuper Frankens.
D.W. Kellogg and E.L. Taylor (2004): Evidence of oribatid mite detritivory in Antarctica during the late Paleozoic and Mesozoic. In PDF, J. Paleont., 78: 1146-1153.
P. Kenrick et al. (1991): Novel ultrastructure in water-conducting cells of the Lower Devonian plant Sennicaulis hippocrepiformis. PDF file, Palaeontology.
! Hans Kerp, Palaeobotanical Research Group, Westfälische Wilhelms University, Münster. Click: "Rhynie Chert" (The Rhynie Chert and its Flora). A depiction of the silica permineralized fossil flora of Rhynie (Scotland), a 400 Million year old flora, which contains a wide diversity of taxa varying from unicellular fungi to the earliest anatomically preserved higher land plants and animal remains. Breathtaking thin section micro-photographs, e.g. in " V. The alternation of generations in early land plants": The male gametophyte with antheridia, the release of sperm from antheridium, etc. Including "The life cycle of Aglaophyton - Lyonophyton", modified after Taylor, Kerp & Hass, 2005, PNAS, v. 102, p. 5892-5897.
Sharon D. Klavins et al. (2002): Anatomy of Umkomasia (Corystospermales) from the Triassic of Antarctica. American Journal of Botany, 89: 664-676. See also here. Abstract, Botany 2001, August 12 - 16, 2001; Albuquerque, New Mexico.
A.A. Klymiuk et al. (2016): Mesozoic and Cenozoic plant evolution and biotic change: Introduction and dedication. In PDF, Botany, 94. See also here and there (table of contents).
Helmut Knoll, Alsdorf, Germany: Fossil plants from the Late Cretaceous Aachen Formation (in German). See especially: Hermanophyton sp.
M. Krings et al. (2011): Fungal sporocarps from the Carboniferous: An unusual specimen of Traquairia. In PDF, Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology, 168: 1-6.
! M. Krings, LMU München: Mikroorganismen aus den Cherts von Esnost und Combres/Lay (Unterkarbon, Frankreich) sowie Rhynie (Unterdevon, Schottland). Scientific project report (in German).
Kuczumow et al. 2001: Structural investigations of a series of petrified woods of different origin. Abstract, Spectrochimica Acta Part B: Atomic Spectroscopy, Volume 56, Number 4, 30 April 2001, pp. 339-350.
Kuczumow et al. 2000: Investigation of petrified wood by synchrotron X-ray fluorescence and diffraction methods. Abstract, Spectrochimica Acta Part B: Atomic Spectroscopy, Volume 55, Number 10, 2 October 2000, pp. 1623-1633. See also here (PDF file).
S. Läbe et al. (2012): Experimental silicification of the tree fern Dicksonia antarctica at high temperature with silica-enriched H2O vapor. Abstract, Palaios.
! D.R. Landenberger (1980): Silicification of Pleistocene plants and associated silica diagenesis. PDF file (slow download), Thesis, Texas Tech University. Conclusions starting on PDF page 50, literature on PDF page 51.
F. Lang: Erntezeit für Kieselhölzer. PDF file, in German. Permineralized wood mainly from the Upper Triassic of Germany.
! R.F. Leo and E.S. Barghoorn (1976): Silicification of wood Botanical Museum Leaflets, Harvard University.F. Löcse et al. (2013): Neue Florenfunde in einem Vulkanit des Oberkarbons von Flöha – Querschnitt durch eine ignimbritische Abkühlungseinheit. PDF file, in German. Veröff. Museum für Naturkunde Chemnitz, 36: 85-142.
S.G. Lucas (2001), go to PDF page 52: Restoration of Late Triassic landscapes at the Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona. In PDF, Proceedings of the 6th Fossil Resource Conference. See also here.
J.A. Luczaj et al. (2019): Comment on “Non-Mineralized Fossil Wood” by George E. Mustoe (Geosciences, 2018). Free access, Geosciences, 8.
L. Luthardt et al. (2018):
growth disturbances in an early Permian calamitalean – traces of a lightning strike?
Abstract, Palaeontographica Abteilung B, 298: 1-22.
! "... The special injury of the calamitalean described herein [...] exhibits an elongated to triangular shape, a central furrow, a scar-associated event ring of collapsed to distorted tracheids, and was ultimately overgrown by callus parenchyma. We suggest that this scar most likely was caused by a lightning strike ..."
Steven R. Manchester, Department of Natural Sciences, Florida Museum of Natural History, University of Florida, Gainsville: PETRIFIED WOODS IN FLORIDA. This article was a contribution to Papers In Florida Paleontology, No. 8, November 1996, published by the Florida Paleontological Society.
L.C.A. Martínez et al. (2012): A new cycad stem from the Cretaceous in Argentina and its phylogenetic relationships with other Cycadales. Free access, Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society, 3: 436–458.
L. Marynowski et al. (2007): Biomolecules preserved in ca. 168 million year old fossil conifer wood. PDF file, Naturwissenschaften, 94: 228-236.
P. Matysová (2016):
Study of fossil wood by modern
analytical methods: case studies.
Doctoral Thesis, Charles University in Prague, Faculty of Science,
Institute of Geology and Palaeontology.
Please take notice: Fig. (PDF page 37): Artistic reconstruction of wood deposition and silicification in river sediments. Fig. 7 (PDF page 37): Artistic reconstruction of plant burial by volcanic fall-out.
! P. Matysová et al. (2010): Alluvial and volcanic pathways to silicified plant stems (Upper Carboniferous-Triassic) and their taphonomic and palaeoenvironmental meaning. PDF file, Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 292: 127-143.
C.L. May and R.E. Gresswell (2003): Processes and rates of sediment and wood accumulation in the headwater streams of the Oregon Coast Range, U.S.A. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms 28(4): 409-424. See also here (PDF file).
S. McLoughlin et al. (2018): Pachytestopsis tayloriorum gen. et sp. nov., an anatomically preserved glossopterid seed from the Lopingian of Queensland, Australia. Chapter 9, in PDF, in: M. Krings, C.J. Harper, N.R. Cuneo and G.W. Rothwell (eds.): Transformative Paleobotany Papers to Commemorate the Life and Legacy of Thomas N. Taylor.
S. McLoughlin and C. Strullu-Derrien (2015): Biota and palaeoenvironment of a high middle-latitude Late Triassic peat-forming ecosystem from Hopen, Svalbard archipelago. In PDF.
S. McLoughlin et al. (2015):
A new Permian permineralized herbaceous
lycopsid from the Prince Charles Mountains, Antarctica. In PDF,
Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology, 220: 1-15. Reconstruction on
PDF page 11.
See also here.
V. Mencl et al. (2013): First anatomical description of silicified calamitalean stems from the upper Carboniferous of the Bohemian Massif (Nová Paka and Rakovník areas, Czech Republic). In PDF, Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology, 197: 70-77. See also here (abstract).
B. Meyer-Berthaud et al. (1993): Petrified Stems Bearing Dicroidium Leaves from the Triassic of Antarctica. In PDF, Palaeontology, 36.
Brigitte Meyer-Berthaud & Thomas N. Taylor (1992). Permineralized Conifer Axes from the Triassic of Antarctica. PDF file.
! Jim Mills, Mills Geological: Museums of Interest. An annotated link list especially of museums with petrified wood collections in the United States.
J.D. Moreau et al. (2015):
of the Histology of Leafy Axes and Male Cones of Glenrosa carentonensis sp. nov.
(Cenomanian Flints of Charente-Maritime, France)
Using Synchrotron Microtomography Linked with Palaeoecology. PloS one, 10.
Plant fossils embedded inside flint nodules.
Palaeobotanical Research Group, Münster, Westfälische Wilhelms University, Münster, Germany.
History of Palaeozoic Forests,
MODES OF PRESERVATION.
Link list page with picture rankings. The links give the most direct connections to pictures available on the web.
Website outdated. The link is to a version archived by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.
G.E. Mustoe et al. (2019): Mineralogy of Eocene Fossil Wood from the “Blue Forest” Locality, Southwestern Wyoming, United States. Free access, Geosciences 2019, 9(1), 35; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences9010035
! A.D. Muscente et al. (2015): Fossil preservation through phosphatization and silicification in the Ediacaran Doushantuo Formation (South China): a comparative synthesis. Abstract, Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 434: 46–62. See also here (in PDF).
! G. Mustoe (2018): Mineralogy of non-silicified fossil wood. Open access, Geosciences, 8.
G.E. Mustoe (2018):
Fossil Wood. Open access,
Note fig. 23: Silification of charred wood.
G.E. Mustoe (2017):
Petrifaction: A New View of Permineralization and Replacement. Abstract,
Geosciences, 7. See also
"... New analytical evidence suggests that for most petrified wood, permineralization and replacement are not independent processes; instead, both processes may occur contemporaneously during diagenesis. Infiltration of mineral-bearing groundwater may initially cause permineralization of cellular tissues, but the wood is undergoing gradual degradation. ..."
G.E. Mustoe and M. Viney (2017): Mineralogy of Paleocene Petrified Wood from Cherokee Ranch Fossil Forest, Central Colorado, USA. Geosciences, 7.
! G. Mustoe and M. Acosta (2016): Origin of Petrified Wood Color. Geosciences, 6.
! G.E. Mustoe (2015): Late Tertiary Petrified Wood from Nevada, USA: Evidence of Multiple Silicification Pathways. Geosciences, 5: 286-309.
National Computational Science Education Consortium (NCSEC):
The Petrification Process of Wood.
This website (NCSEC served as a national educational computational science clearinghouse)
offers math and science teachers
an array of online educational tools. Some parts are a bit confusing.
Snapshot taken by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine. Go to:
How Does Wood Petrify? "When minerals seep into fossils".
Neues Jahrbuch für Mineralogie, Geognosie, Geologie und Petrefakten-Kunde 1860. By Karl Cäsar von Leonhard, Heinrich Georg Bronn (E. Schweizerbart's Verlagshandlung), digitized by Google Book Search. Go to: K. Fr. W Braun: Über das Bayreuther versteinte Holz.
R. Neregato and J. Hilton (2019): Reinvestigation of the Enigmatic Carboniferous Sphenophyte Strobilus Cheirostrobus Scott and Implications of In Situ Retusotriletes Spores. In PDF, Int. J. Plant Sci., 180: 811–833. See also here.
R. Neregato et al. (2017):
petrified calamitaleans from the Permian of the Parnaíba Basin, central-north Brazil,
part II, and phytogeographic implications for late Paleozoic floras. In PDF,
Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology, 237: 37–61.
Note fig. 2 (on PDF page 16): The proposed reconstruction of Arthropitys tocantinensis sp. nov., drawn by F. Spindler, Freiberg).
R Neregato et al. (2015): New petrified calamitaleans from the Permian of the Parnaíba Basin, central-north Brazil. Part I. In PDF, Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology, 215: 23-45.
Sandra Niemirowska, Warsaw:
Various species of fossilized wood taken under the microscope and shown in tomograms.
Worth checking out:
! Anatomical details under the stereoscopic optical microscope and scanning electron microscope.
Gallery of petrified wood. A collection of petrified wood arranged in order of locations.
F. Orange et al. (2013): Experimental Simulation of Evaporation-Driven Silica Sinter Formation and Microbial Silicification in Hot Spring Systems. In PDF.
J.M. Osborn and T.N. Taylor (1989): Structurally Preserved Sphenophytes from the Triassic of Antarctica: Vegetative Remains of Spaciinodum, gen. nov. PDF file, American Journal of Botany.
Geobiology, Department of Earth Sciences, Oxford University: Questioning the evidence for Earth's oldest fossils,
Available from The Paleontology Society:
! The Oldest Fossil Evidence of Life. In PDF, prepared by J. William Schopf and designed by Diane Lonardelli.
K.C. Pfeiler and A.M.F. Tomescu (2017): An Early Devonian permineralized rhyniopsid from the Battery Point Formation of Gaspe (Canada). Abstract, bioRxiv. See also here (in PDF).
! T.L. Phillips et al. (1976): Fossil peat of the Illinois basin: a guide to the study of coal balls of Pennsylvanian age. In PDF, Geoscience education, 11.
K.B. Pigg and M.L. DeVore (2016): A review of the plants of the Princeton chert (Eocene, British Columbia, Canada). In PDF, Botany, 94: 661–681.
Etiene F. Pires & Margot Guerra-Sommer (Departamento de Paleontologia e Estratigrafia, Instituto de Geociências, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, Brasil): Sommerxylon spiralosus from Upper Triassic in southernmost Paraná Basin (Brazil): a new taxon with taxacean affinity. An. Acad. Bras. Ciênc. vol.76 no.3 Rio de Janeiro; 2004. Download this article (PDF file).
Department of Earth Sciences, Geochemistry,
TAPHONOMY & PRESERVATION OF WOOD.
This expired link is now available through the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.
I. Poole (2000): Fossil angiosperm wood anatomy: its role in the reconstruction of biodiversity and palaeoenvironment. PDF file, Botanical journal of the Linnean Society, 134: 361-381.
L. Bruce Railsback, Department of Geology, University of Georgia, Athens: An Atlas of Speleothem Microfabrics. Stalagmites, stalactites, and other mineral deposits known as speleothems contain chemical and mineralogical clues to past rainfall and temperatures. Go to: plant matter in a stalagmite. See also here, and SEM image of plant tissue (xylem) amidst calcite in a stalagmite.
! J. Ramezani et al. (2011): High-precision U-Pb zircon geochronology of the Late Triassic Chinle Formation, Petrified Forest National Park (Arizona, USA): Temporal constraints on the early evolution of dinosaurs. Abstract.
Authored by the The Rhynie Chert Research Group, University of Aberdeen, with contributions and support by the Palaeobotanical Research Group, University of Münster, Germany, the Centre for Palynology, University of Sheffield, The Natural History Museum, London, and The Royal Museum, National Museums of Scotland: The Biota of Early Terrestrial Ecosystems, The Rhynie Chert. A resource site for students and teachers covering many aspects of the present knowledge of this unique geological deposit (including a glossary and bibliography pages). Go to: Taphonomy of the Rhynie Chert, and Silicification and the Conversion of Sinter to Chert.
N. Robin et al. (2015): Calcification and Diagenesis of Bacterial Colonies. In PDF, Minerals, 5: 488-506.
R. Rößler (2019): Der Wald aus Stein unter Chemnitz – einzigartiges „Pompeji des Erdaltertums“. In German, PDF file. Kalenderblatt April 2019, Online-Plattform der Professur Geschichte Europas im Mittelalter und in der Frühen Neuzeit an der Technischen Universität Chemnitz.
R. Rößler et al. (2015): Der Versteinerte Wald Chemnitz - Momentaufnahme eines vulkanisch konservierten Ökosystems aus dem Perm (Exkursion L am 11. April 2015). PDF file, in German. The petrified forest of Chemnitz - A snapshot of an early Permian ecosystem preserved by volcanism. Jber. Mitt. oberrhein. geol. Ver., N.F. 97.
R. Rößler (2014): Die Bewurzelung permischer Calamiten: Aussage eines Schlüsselfundes zur Existenz freistehender baumförmiger Schachtelhalmgewächse innerhalb der Paläofloren des äquatornahen Gondwana. PDF file, in German. The roots of Permian calamitaleans - a key find suggests the existence of free-stemmed arborescent sphenopsids among the low latitude palaeofloras of Gondwana. Freiberger Forschungshefte, C 548.
R. Rößler (2014): Das Museum für Naturkunde Chemnitz - eine Erfolgsgeschichte (in German). PDF file, go to PDF page 47. Mitteilungen und Berichte aus dem Institut für Museumsforschung, 52.
R. Rößler et al. (2012):
largest calamite and its growth architecture - Arthropitys bistriata from the Early
Permian Petrified Forest of Chemnitz. In PDF,
Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology, 185: 64-78.
The link is to a version archived by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.
! R. Rößler (2000): The late Palaeozoic tree fern Psaronius - an ecosystem unto itself. In PDF, Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology, 108: 55-74. See also here.
Ronny Rößler, Museum of Natural History, Chemnitz (John Wiley & Sons, Inc.): Das Perm - Farnwälder, Glutwolken und Salzwüsten. In German. Full article available here (PDF file).
R. Rößler (1999): Sächsische und thüringische Kieselhölzer - Funde und Sammlungen an der Wiege der Geowissenschaften PDF file, in German.
R. Rößler and M. Barthel(1998): Rotliegend taphocoenoses preservation favoured by rhyolitic explosive volcanism. In PDF, Freiberger Forschungshefte C, 474: 59–101. See also here.
G.W. Rothwell and T. Ohana (2016): Stockeystrobus gen. nov. (Cupressaceae), and the evolutionary diversification of sequoioid conifer seed cones. Abstract, Botany, 94: 847-861. See also here (in PDF).
G.W. Rothwell et al. (2013): Diversity of ancient conifers: The Jurassic seed cone Bancroftiastrobus digitata gen. et sp. nov. (Coniferales). In PDF, Int. J. Plant Sci., 174: 937-946.
Gar W. Rothwell and Ruth A. Stockey (2002): Anatomically preserved Cycadeoidea (Cycadeoidaceae), with a reevaluation of systematic characters for the seed cones of Bennettitales. PDF file, American Journal of Botany. 2002;89:1447-1458. See also here (abstract).
Gar W. Rothwell, Department of Environmental and Plant Biology Ohio University, Athens: Cutting a Coal Ball and Coal Ball Peel Technique. Part of the Paleobotany course.
Gar W. Rothwell, Edith L. Taylor and Thomas N. Taylor: Ashicaulis woolfei n. sp.: additional evidence for the antiquity of osmundaceous ferns from the Triassic of Antarctica. Abstract, American Journal of Botany. 2002; 89: 352-361.
Patricia E. Ryberg et al. (2008): Development and ecological implications of dormant buds in the high-Paleolaltitude Triassic sphenophyte Spaciinodum (Equisetaceae). PDF file, Am. J. Bot., 95: 1443-1453. See also here.
! R.A. Savidge (2007): Wood anatomy of Late Triassic trees in Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona, USA, in relation to Araucarioxylon arizonicum Knowlton, 1889. PDF file, Bulletin of Geosciences, Vol. 82: 301-328.
A. Savoretti et al. (2018):
in the Early Cretaceous: Tricarinella crassiphylla gen. et sp. nov. and
the value of anatomically preserved bryophytes. Free access,
Annals of Botany, 121: 1275–1286.
"... One fossil moss gametophyte preserved in a carbonate concretion was studied in serial sections prepared using the cellulose acetate peel technique. ..."
J.W. Schopf (1999), article starts on PDF page 105: Fossils and Pseudofossils: Lessons from the Hunt for Early Life on Earth. In PDF; In: Proceedings of the Workshop on Size Limits of Very Small Organisms, Space Studies Board, National Research Council, National Academies Press, Washington, DC. See also here.
F.H. Schweingruber and A. Börner (2018):
permineralization, coalification, carbonization and wet wood conservation. PDF file,
In: F.H. Schweingruber and A. Börner:
! The Plant Stem. A Microscopic Aspect. Open access!
! A.B. Schwendemann et al. (2010): Organization, anatomy, and fungal endophytes of a Triassic conifer embryo. In PDF, American Journal of Botany, 97: 1873-1883.
! Andrew C. Scott and Margaret E. Collinson (2003): Non-destructive multiple approaches to interpret the preservation of plant fossils: implications for calcium-rich permineralisations. PDF file, Journal of the Geological Society, 160: 857-862. See also here.
A.C. Scott and G. Rex (1985): The formation and significance of Carboniferous coal balls. PDF file, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society London, B, 311: 123-137.
A. Scott and M. Collinson (1982). Starting on PDF page 06:
fossil plant beds.
Part 1: The origin of fossil plants
and their sediments.
Geology Teaching, 7.
! Note fig. 3: Sketch of in situ silicified tree stumps and lignitic roots, partly with siliceous core.
! R. Serbet et al. (2013): Cunninghamia taylorii sp. nov., a Structurally Preserved Cupressaceous Conifer from the Upper Cretaceous (Campanian) Horseshoe Canyon Formation of Western North America. In PDF, International Journal of Plant Sciences, 174: 471-488.
G.W.K. Shelton et al. (2015): Exploring the fossil history of pleurocarpous mosses: Tricostaceae fam. nov. from the Cretaceous of Vancouver Island, Canada. In PDF, American Journal of Botany.
F.D. Siewers and T.L. Phillips (2015): Petrography and microanalysis of Pennsylvanian coal-ball concretions (Herrin Coal, Illinois Basin, USA): Bearing on fossil plant preservation and coal-ball origins. Abstract, Sedimentary Geology, 329.
! A.C. Sigleo (1979): Geochemistry of silicified wood and associated sediments, Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona. Abstract, Chemical Geology, 26: 151-163.
B.J. Slater et al. (2015): A high-latitude Gondwanan lagerstätte: The Permian permineralised peat biota of the Prince Charles Mountains, Antarctica. In PDF, Gondwana Research, 27: 1446-1473. See also here (abstract).B.J. Slater (2014): Cryptic diversity of a Glossopteris forest: the Permian Prince Charles Mountains Floras, Antarctica. In PDF, Ph.D. thesis, University of Birmingham. See also here.
M.K.A. Smith et al. (2015): Mesozoic Diversity of Osmundaceae: Osmundacaulis whittlesii sp. nov. in the Early Cretaceous of Western Canada. Abstract, Journal of Plant Sciences, 176: 245-258. See also here (in PDF).
Hans Steur, Ellecom, The Netherlands:
Hans´ Paleobotany Pages.
Plant life from the Silurian to the Cretaceous. Go to:
Wood of the horsetail tree Calamites,
The tree fern Psaronius,
The tree fernTempskya
The gymnospermous tree Cordaites,
Fossil gymnosperm wood, and
Fossil palm wood or Palmoxylon.
R.A. Stockey (1977): Reproductive biology of the Cerro Cuadrado (Jurassic) fossil conifers: Pararaucaria patagonica. In PDF, American Journal of Botany, 64: 733-744. See also here.
! Ed Strauss, Washington (article hosted by Evolving Earth Foundation Issaquah, WA). The Evolving Earth Foundation is committed to encouraging research and building community related to the earth sciences. How to Identify Fossil (Petrified) Wood. See also: How to Identify Conifers. Conifer micro photographs.
H. Süss et al. (2009): Drei neue fossile Hölzer der Morphogattung Primoginkgoxylon gen. nov. aus der Trias von Kenia. PDF file (in German), Feddes Repertorium, 120: 273 - 292. See also here (Abstract).C. Strullu-Derrien et al. (2015): Fungal colonization of the rooting system of the early land plant Asteroxylon mackiei from the 407-Myr-old Rhynie Chert (Scotland, UK). In PDF, Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society, 179: 201–213. See also here.
C. Strullu-Derrien et al. (2011): Evidence of parasitic Oomycetes (Peronosporomycetes) infecting the stem cortex of the Carboniferous seed fern Lyginopteris oldhamia. IN PDF, Proc. R. Soc. B, 278: 675-680.
! L. Tapanila and E.M. Roberts (2012): The Earliest Evidence of Holometabolan Insect Pupation in Conifer Wood. In PDF. See also here.
Edith L. Taylor (1996): Enigmatic gymnosperms? Structurally preserved Permian and Triassic seed ferns from Antarctica. PDF file, Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology. See also here (abstract).
! Thomas N. Taylor and Michael Krings (2005): Fossil microorganisms and land plants: Associations and interactions. PDF file, Symbiosis, 40: 119-135.
E.L. Taylor et al. (1989): Depositional setting and paleobotany of Permian and Triassic permineralized peat from the central Transantarctic Mountains, Antarctica. Abstract, international Journal of Coal Geology. See also here (in PDF).
! Edith L. Taylor and Thomas N. Taylor: Structurally Preserved Permian and Triassic Floras from Antarctica. PDF file.
Versteinerte Pflanzen (in German). A well organized website showing permineralized wood from all over the world. Including location descriptions.
A.M.F.M. Tomescu (2018): Exquisitely preserved tiny fossils are key for understanding moss evolution. Botany One.
A.M.F. Tomescu (2016): The Early Cretaceous Apple Bay flora of Vancouver Island: a hotspot of fossil bryophyte diversity. In PDF, Botany, 9. See also here.
Treasures of the Earth, Ltd., Hollsopple, PA., U.S.A.: Petrified Wood. Images of petrified wood slabs, chiefly from the Chinle Formation, Utah, USA.
E. Trembath-Reichert et al. (2015): Four hundred million years of silica biomineralization in land plants. Free Access, Proc. National Academy of Sciences USA, 112: 5449–5454.
Nigel H. Trewin, Stephen R. Fayers & Lyall I. Anderson, University of Aberdeen: The Biota of Early Terrestrial Ecosystems: The Rhynie Chert. The "Learning Resource" (updated 08/09/04) is primarily a resource site for students and teachers covering many aspects of the present knowledge of the unique Rhynie Chert deposit and its scientific significance (including a glossary and bibliography pages). The "Suggestions For Tutors" provides guidance for teachers (password protected). This part is primarily aimed at a university Honours degree level. The content is primarily of value in geology teaching, but has relevance to botany, zoology, ecology and history of science.
! Kyle Trostle (2009), Franklin and Marshall College, Earth and Environment Department, Lancaster, PA: Diagenetic History of Fossil Wood from the Paleocene Chickaloon Formation, Matanuska Valley, Alaska. Snapshot taken by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.
S. Trümper et al. (2018):
silicification pathways of fossil forests: Case studies
from the late Paleozoic of Central Europe. Open access,
Note figure 10a (PDF page 15): Cross-cut of a log horizontally embedded in medium-grained sandstones.
Note figure 12b (PDF page 17): Permineralized Agathoxylon-type stem, encrusted completely by a stromatolite.
UntraveledRoad, Paris, ID: Petrified Forest National Park Information Center. The Photographic Virtual Tour Website. Go to: Triassic Landscape.
U.S. Geological Survey (USGS): U.S. Geological Survey Photographic Archive. This on-line system provides access to over 19,000 photographs and original sketches, dating from 1868 to the present. Go to: NATIONAL PARKS-MONUMENTS-SEASHORE. Choose: "Petrified National Park".
M. Viney et al. (2017):
Bruneau Woodpile: A Miocene Phosphatized Fossil Wood Locality in Southwestern Idaho, USA.
Open access, Geosciences, 7.
Note fig. 14: Streambank exposure reveals three successive lahar wood mats containing rough-surfaced fragments of mummified wood.
! M. Viney et al. (2016): Multi-Stage Silicification of Pliocene Wood: Re-Examination of an 1895 Discovery from Idaho, USA. Geosciences, 6.
Mike Viney, The Virtual Petrified Wood Museum: Fossils. In PDF.
Mike Viney, Ft. Collins, Colorado:
The Virtual Petrified Wood Museum.
Images of fossil wood and other fossils sorted by geological age.
! Petrified Wood: The Silicification of Wood by Permineralization (PDF file).
See also: Anatomy. The anatomy of arborescent plants through time.
S.-J. Wang et al. (2017): Anatomically preserved "strobili" and leaves from the Permian of China (Dorsalistachyaceae, fam. nov.) broaden knowledge of Noeggerathiales and constrain their possible taxonomic affinities. In PDF, Am. J. Bot., 104: 127-149.
Shi-Jun Wang et al. (2011): Cycad Wood from the Lopingian (Late Permian) of Southern China: Shuichengoxylon tianii gen. et sp. nov. PDF file, Int. J. Plant Sci., 172: 725-734.
Wang Xiaofeng et al. (2009):
The Triassic Guanling fossil Group - A key GeoPark from
Barren Mountain, Guizhou Province, China.
A colony of Traumatocrinus sp. attached by root cirri to an agatized piece of
PDF file, from:
Jere H. Lipps and Bruno R.C. Granier (eds.) 2009, (e-book, hosted by Carnets): PaleoParks - The protection and conservation of fossil sites worldwide. Also available from here.
WAYNE'S WORD, Escondido, CA (A nonprofit quarterly journal published by WOLFFIA INC.): Fossils Of Ancient Plants. This websites are dedicated to little-known facts and trivia about natural history subjects.
Michael Wegner, Köln, Germany: Versteinertes Holz.de (in German).
Hans-J. Weiss, Rabenau, Germany: Chert News. You can also navigate from the Site map.
! Ian West, Southampton University: The Fossil Forest - East of Lulworth Cove, Dorset.
Ian West, Southampton Oceanography Centre, School of Ocean and Earth Science, Southampton University: The Fossil Forest, west of Lulworth Cove, Dorset, southern England. This is a classic geological locality with the remains and moulds of late Jurassic or early Cretaceous coniferous trees rooted in a palaeosol (ancient soil), the Great Dirt Bed. Above the trees is stromatolitic limestone and over this the unusual Broken Beds, a limestone breccia that was originally evaporitic. Let´s have a look at the Purbeck Trees.
! F. Westall et al. (1995): The experimental silicification of microorganisms. In PDF.
Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:
! Petrified wood.
Petrified Forest National Park.
Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:
Global Geoparks Network,
C.J. Williams et al. (2010): Fossil wood in coal-forming environments of the late Paleocene-early Eocene Chickaloon Formation. PDF file, Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 295: 363-375. Now provided by the Internet Archive´s Wayback Machine.
! www.kieseltorf.de. Permineralized plant fossils from Germany (in German).
H.-H. Xu et al. (2017):
growth strategy in the Earth´s first trees revealed in silicified fossil trunks from China. Abstract,
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America,
114: 12009–12014. See also:
! D. Yuhas (2018): Ancient Tree Structure Is Like a Forest unto Itself. Arboreal fossils reveal an unusual and complex structure. Scientific American. See further: Paläobotaniker lüften das Geheimnis der Urbäume (Spektrum.de, in German).
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