This is one of the single rarest forms of petrified wood we've had in some time. The strange looking oval shaped patterns framing and permeating this petrified conifer tree are actually the fossil remains of a fungus that invaded this ancient tree before it was fossilized into the gemstone it is today! I've seen a few pieces of this material over the years, but this is one of the largest and few complete rounds we've had. It's also by far the most deeply invaded with large fungal growths! This is actually a double fossil - the petrified wood being Araucarioxylon arizonacum and the fungus scientists have named Polyporites wardii, a parasite that covered the tree while it was still alive! The wood in this area is mineralized with silica and other impurities that mean it polishes, but not to the same mirror lustre that it's rainbow wood cousins can achieve. It's a very solid, well prepared museum piece that is both fascinating and gorgeous!
One of the oldest and best known petrified forests in the United States is in Arizona. What is less known is that the northern part of the state also holds some incredible petrified wood fossils, and this stunning specimen is one of them. We acquired this piece as part of an estate collection years ago and only recently re-worked the stone to bring it to a proper shine. The fungus is preserved in barite (fungus is almost never seen because it doesn't preserve in silica the way wood does) which means it's a bit softer and doesn't achieve the same high polish that the highly silicified wood did, but it did polish and it looks great. This is a rarely seen variation and a unique natural phenomenon in the petrified wood world. Something few of us will ever even see in such an incredible specimen!
If you're new to our shop the one thing you should expect is to see an unexpectedly glossy finish on each stone we prepare. This complete round is a wonderful example of our work. It's been cut with a diamond saw and flat lapped on equipment I built myself to produce a mirror perfect polish unmatched by any of our many would-be imitators. The detail captured and revealed through the highly polished surface is just immaculate. It's easily some of the best Utah wood to be found anywhere! The rings are gorgeous, the agate is highly polished and the detail is easier to see in person than the photo suggests. It's a truly special find and we won't likely have a lot more so get a piece for your collection while it's available!
This is a slab from the center of the log and measures about 17 3/4" x 11 1/4" across the polished face and is cut approx 3/4" thick which makes it substantial enough for either wall art or as a table top. Weight is about 10.72 lbs.
A nice, unique natural wonder collectible exclusively from Sticks-in-Stones Lapidary!
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