Minda Berbeco's picture

Answer Monday!

I hope everyone had a terrific Memorial Day weekend! This week’s fossil used to be green—but now is quite dark indeed, having been found in coal deposits in the mid-west. So what was this mystery plant?

It was a Lepidodendron. From Encyclopedia Britannica:

Lepidodendron, extinct genus of tree-sized lycopsid plants that lived during the Carboniferous Period (about 359 million to 299 million years ago) ... [They] reproduced by spores, with megaspores giving rise to the female (egg-producing) gametophyte and microspores giving rise to the male (sperm-producing) gametophyte. Lepidodendron and its relatives lived in the extensive peat-forming swamps of the Early and Middle Pennsylvanian epochs (about 318 million to 307 million years ago) and became extinct when these swamps disappeared.”

Thanks to those who played this week! For this coming week’s fossil, do you think I should go with more plants or switch back to animals?