New plant fossil from Solite

On Friday Jim Beard and I went to the Solite Quarry to meet with officials from CEMEX, the new owners of the quarry. Since we’re planning a major excavation there this April, we spent a few minutes going over the site. We only spent about 15 minutes at the excavation site, but while we were there CEMEX employee Kenneth Vanhoy found this interesting fossil plant. The base of the plant appears to be preserved, which is not something we see very often (these are lake deposits, so most of the plants are leaves blown or washed into the lake). I’m not sure what type of plant this is, although I’m admittedly still learning about Triassic plants.

The online, open access journal PLoS ONE has grouped their paleontology papers together on one website for easy access.


Virginia is currently sitting under a blanket of snow. Even so, the weather is supposed to warm up later this week, so I’m optimistic that are Carmel Church excavation will begin as scheduled on March 9. As usual, I’ll be posting daily updates about the progress of the excavation.

This entry was posted in Newark Supergroup, Paleobotany, Solite Quarry. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to New plant fossil from Solite

  1. neil says:

    Is it the first American corystosperm !? I’m sort of kidding, but it does have a very “Dicroidiumy” look to my very untrained eyes…

  2. Doug says:

    I don’t know why, perhaps it’s the shape of what look like th leaves, but that plant reminds me of the sword ferns i used to get for my aquarium. Perhaps it’s an aquatic plant. But then again I’m no expert.

    Can’t wait for the Carmel Church excavations!

  3. Alton Dooley says:

    Nick Fraser and Brian Axsmith, who have both been working on Solite fossils, suggested that this may be a cone. See, for example, these spikemoss cones:

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