This is a particularly interesting and virtually perfect slab cut from one of the prettiest and most unique of the petrified palm logs we imported recently from Myanmar. When you hold this highly polished slab in your hands the slabs sparkles no matter what the light source available is. This was very puzzling until I looked at the stone under magnification and saw that virtually every one of the vascular structures is a tiny, long, crystal lined geode cavity packed with perfectly terminated sparkling clear crystals! I've looked at a lot of petrified wood under magnification and have grown to love the other world often visible there, but this is the first time I've seen anything like this! In the past we've offered palm specimens from Texas, Louisiana, Indonesia and Wyoming, but this is the best batch of petrified palm logs we've ever had the pleasure of cutting! We have several choice petrified tropical hardwoods available from this forest, but this slab is cut from the largest palm log we've seen and it is very nicely preserved! The vascular bundles under magnification are fascinating and not quite like other palms I've seen from Asia, though the species is beyond my qualifications to even attempt to name if it has, in fact, been identified at all! And of course you know that we've polished this amazing natural treasure to a truly mirror perfect finish as well! As unusual as it is colorful!
A few years ago on a trip to Asia I made a chance discovery that has started a nearly year long odyssey to track down a new source for petrified wood. I met a fellow with a family connection in Myanmar. I had heard rumors for years about petrified logs in Burma, but the only ones I had ever seen were in a market in Shanghai. Those logs were prohibitively expensive, but absolutely fascinating and, best of all, highly agatized. One of the most difficult things to assess with a potential new source for logs is whether the material is agatized enough to produce good specimens. But I was a bit more optimistic in this case as I had high hopes that the nicely silicified logs I'd seen in China were in fact Burmese logs. Since then I've made two trips to Myanmar to examine the material and meet the people digging it. Most of what they dig is still exported to China as viewing stones, some of them towering much higher than me! These are typically not cut, but polished on one vertical face to follow the contours of the log which are then sold as tree jade (though the material is opal and agate and not jade at all). I visited the villages where these stones were being dug and worked by the local craftsmen. Aside from being thatched huts with open sides, these compounds look a lot like my place with rock piled up everywhere! But among the overgrown piles of stone (filled with giant blue scorpions no less!) were some choice full logs of what appeared to be very well preserved petrified wood. I eventually managed to secure two smaller logs that I could fly back with in my luggage to cut and polish and prove out the stone I was seeing. As exciting as it always is for me to work with a new source of petrified wood, I was very pleasantly surprised to find fine structure and very polishable specimens in these two logs, though each was preserved very differently and clearly from different sites.
This piece measures about 10 3/4" x 8 1/8" across the polished face and is cut about 0.53" thick . Weight is 3.28 lbs. Stands sold separately.
A nice, unique naturally wonderful stone collectible exclusively from Sticks-in-Stones Lapidary.