smithsonian specimen


Petrified Chromium Wood (Araucarioxylon arizonicum) - From a locality near Winslow, Navajo County, Arizona

From one of the oddest finds of Petrified wood in the world, this Conifer tree existed between 65 and 200 million years ago during the Triassic Era. When the tree died and was becoming petrified, it became exposed to the mineral Chromium (same mineral which colors Emeralds). Native Americans were the first to find the material and used it in jewelry making but kept the location a secret until it was eventually rediscovered and authenticated by the Smithsonian. These specimens are natural hygrometers. When dry they become a very light pale green and when wet or exposed to humidity they turn a deep green.