Article: A herbaceous lycophyte from the Lower Carboniferous Drybrook Sandstone of the Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire
Leafy lycophyte shoots preserved as impressions and as material resembling fusain are described from a shale band in the Drybrook sandstone (Upper Visean), Puddlebrook, Forest of Dean. The consistently narrow stems with small terminal strobili bearing megaspore impressions place this material in Selaginellites Zeiller (1906). Fusainized material shows fine surface morphology and anatomy of the leaves and stem. The large number of specimens demonstrates a wide range of morphological variation in the position and shape of attached leaves. In particular, the impressions and fusainized preservation of laterally attached microphylls, which are orientated perpendicularly to the bedding plane, are often drastically altered from their original laminate structure. The leafy shoots show some similarity to those of Clwydia decussata Lacey (1962) and Archaeosigillaria kidstonii Krausel and Weyland (1949). These plants are also discussed in the light of recent approaches towards the interpretation of lycophyte impressions and compressions. The new material is assigned to S. resimus sp. nov.