Stigmaria Ficoides

Stigmaria is the generic name given to fossil root casts of various tree species of the Pennsylvanian Period, regardless of the form genera and species. By association, this specimen was determined to belong to Lepidodendron.

This is a fossilized root of the tree Lepidodendron.
Rock Type: Sandstone
Formation: Kanawha
Interval: Coalburg seam
Age: Middle Pennsylvanian Period, approx. 307 million years.


The round nodes on the surface of stigmaria are scars where ribbon-like rootlets were once attached and arranged radially about stigmaria like the bristles of a bottle brush.

A flattened vascular tube is frequently visible on the end of stigmaria, located just off center of the axis of the root and running longitudinally down its length, which provided fluids and perhaps nutrients to the main tree in life.


Location: Nicholas County, West Virginia; Ramp Run Surface Mine #1, located about 12 miles north of Summersville, West Virginia. Turn west off route 19 north of Summersville onto Spruce Run Road. Follow it about 7 miles. It is now mostly reclaimed, but collecting is still good along the exposed rock rip-rap outslope of the sediment ditch along Buffalo Creek.