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The Magical Petrified Woods Fossil [World Wood Day 2021]


petrified wood collection

If you love art and nature, this post is for you.

World Wood Day is a cultural event celebrated annually on March 21st, same day as the International Day of Forests. For today, we’d like to feature one of the greatest artworks of nature and a product of our forests — the petrified woods!

Petrified wood is a fossil of a tree that flourished on earth millions of years ago. It is formed when tissues (bark) of the dead plant are replaced by minerals while being buried in sediments. 

In 2018, Mr. Lawrence John Gotuaco donated his petrified wood collections to the #NationalMuseumPH. The collection is composed of 88 foreign woods from USA, Indonesia, India, Burma, Saudi Arabia, and Greece while 8 collections are from Cagayan, Iloilo, and Mindoro. 

Can you believe that these petrified woods’ age ranges from 296 million years (oldest) to 10,000 years old (newest)?

The collection displays wood structures preserved in detail and shaded in vivid hues and complex color patterns. 

The mineral present determines the colors of the wood such as:

  • Blue-green color (from chromium, copper, and cobalt-rich minerals)
  • Red-brown, orange, pink and yellow color (from manganese and iron-rich minerals)
  • Transparent white and gray color (from silica mineral)
  • Black color (from carbon mineral)

It seems Mother Nature really found her masterpiece in buried pieces of wood. 

Do you have your own petrified wood collection? Share it below or visit us by booking online at


Text and image by NMP GPD

© National Museum of the Philippines (2021)

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