Published online by Cambridge University Press: 21 July 2017
The exceptional preservation of plant fossils falls into two categories: whole plant preservation and anatomical detail. Whole plant preservation is controlled primarily by transport and event preservation (e.g., ash falls), whereas anatomical preservation can occur through one of several taphonomic pathways: compression-impression, silicification, coal-ball formation, pyritization, and charcoalification. This review focuses on these taphonomic pathways, highlighting important factors and controls on the exceptional preservation of plants. Special emphasis is given to data garnered from experimental and actualistic approaches.