Chemnitz, Germany

This photograph is of the central hardwood of this ancient tree. The radial light-colored cracks are rays. Rays make firewood logs split. They are structures that in life conduct sap horizontally. Compared to the elongated longitudinal structures that move moisture upwards, they are large. In death, they provide a conduit for petrifying minerals. Here one sees various hydrated silicon dioxide minerals on their way to becoming opal or quartz.
Copyright © 2003 Giraud Foster & Norman Barker