2" Colorful, Polished Petrified Palm Root - Indonesia
This is an approximately 2" wide, colorful piece of petrified palm root that has been polished into an oval stone. The vascular nature of root means that traditional tree rings are replaced by pores and channels. This fossilized palm comes from West Java, Indonesia and is Miocene in age, or around 20 million years old.
Petrified wood is the name given to wood that has been turned into stone (fossilized) through the process of permineralization. All of the organic matter becomes replaced by minerals, while much of the original structure such as tree rings in retained. For this to happen the wood needs to be buried in an environment both low in oxygen (preventing decomposition) and with flowing, mineral-laden water. The coloration is due to the various minerals that are present during fossilization. For example red colors are due to iron compounds, greens due to copper, etc.