Branching crystal growth
Dendrite is a special crystal growth of manganese-containing minerals. The crystal grows by making branches. It is best compared to a tree, which continually forms new branches. Because of this shape, it is therefore not surprising that dendrite is mistakenly regarded as a fossil. Dendrite is therefore sometimes called a pseudo fossil (things that look like a fossil but are not).
We encounter dendritic growth everywhere in nature. Snowflakes grow in a dendritic pattern, just like trees and the neurons in our brains. Even rivers follow this pattern of branches. In crystallography, dendritic crystals are formed when crystal formation takes place at a temperature far below the normal crystallization temperature.
Dendrite in rock
Dendrite is often found in porous limestone, where it has worked its way through fissures and cavities. But also in agate and opal we see the most beautiful dendrite shapes that have arisen during the growing process.
This beautiful dendrite slab has a size of 34 x 27 x 2 cm.