Eocene Keaki Tree Leaf Fossil from Green River Formation

Name: Zelkova nervosa

Division: Magnoliophyta; Class: Magnoliopsida; Order: Rosales; Family: Ulmaceae

Geological Time: Eocene

Size (25.4 mm = 1 inch): Leaf: 45 mm by 9 mm Matrix: 77 mm by 58 mm

Fossil Site: Green River Shale, Uintah County, Utah

This fossil leaf from a member of the Ulmaceae, or Elms. The closest living relative is Zelkova serrata which has strongly serrated leaf margins, and is a popular cultivated tree from Japan. The genus went extinct in North America during the Tertiary. The deep brown color is a fine contrast to the light shale matrix, with the leaf well centered on the plate.

click fossil plant images to enlarge

Zelkova nervosa

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