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World's oldest wood fossil discovered

Posted on Sunday, 14 August, 2011 | Comment icon 11 comments | News tip by: Still Waters

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The ancient wood belonged to a small herb and would have grown over 400 million years ago.

The discovery suggests that wood didn't originally evolve in trees - instead it is believed that it assisted in the flow of water up the stems of the plants. Trees didn't appear until around 385 million years ago.

"Two 400-million-year-old fossil plants are the oldest known examples of wood."

  View: Full article |  Source: New Scientist

  Discuss: View comments (11)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #2 Posted by Hybrid89 on 14 August, 2011, 12:40
I have to agree.
Comment icon #3 Posted by aquatus1 on 14 August, 2011, 12:49
An entire forest made out of fungi...creepy, except you know that there wouldn't be any animals either...or even bugs...
Comment icon #4 Posted by Abramelin on 14 August, 2011, 13:18
Heh, I was thinking about these giant fungi too as soon as I read the OP. But the OP is not about fungi, as you can see from the photo published with the article. "Trees would not evolve until about 385 million years ago, at which point they began scrambling to grow taller in order to capture more light. [u]Wood was crucial for this[/u], because it made their trunks sturdier." Well, the next is old news, but it shows fungi (=NOT plants) had no problems growing tall: Scientists have identified the Godzilla of fungi - a giant, prehistoric fossil that has evaded classification for mor... [More]
Comment icon #5 Posted by Swede on 14 August, 2011, 13:39
Re: "Bugs". If we are using the circa 400 million yr. figure, it would appear that insects were already present: Aged and persistent rascals. .
Comment icon #6 Posted by xXHellkittiesXx on 14 August, 2011, 14:54
Herb? Smokable herb? Imagine smoking an 400 million year old herb...I bet they had good stuff back then ;)
Comment icon #7 Posted by j23w on 15 August, 2011, 5:38
I am a new christian struggling with their idea of new age earth. These articles fascinate me but wish they would explain how they date things. By what process etc...
Comment icon #8 Posted by Hybrid89 on 15 August, 2011, 9:10
Theres a lot of ways of dating fossils. Although its been a number of years since I did history or even anything close to it, Carbon dating is but one way of dating a fossil as far as I remember. Google 'how do you date fossils' and you'll find what your looking for.
Comment icon #9 Posted by xCrimsonx on 15 August, 2011, 11:33
Comment icon #10 Posted by xCrimsonx on 15 August, 2011, 11:35

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