10 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Trovants; Romania’s “Living” Stones

Trovants are another one of nature's wonders. All they need is rain and moisture to come to life and grow and multiply.

Stones are inanimate objects. They are not living organisms. They have no biological processes. They cannot move, they cannot breathe, and they cannot reproduce. At least, this is what we are all used to know.

There is, however, a special type of stone in Romania that is a complete exception. Romania’s “Living” stones, more commonly known as Trovants, are the only stones in the world listed as a living organism. Here is my in-depth presentation of this geological wonder and following it will be a brief summary of the discussion in 10 facts.

The Trovant Geological Wonder

Each trovant is completely different, they grow in all kinds of shapes. Source: Wikipedia
Each trovant is completely different, they grow in all kinds of shapes. Source: Wikipedia

In the central part of Romania, a wondrous place exists where you can see remarkable rock formations. They are called trovants. Not only can they increase in size, but they also … multiply. That is why these Romanian stones are officially included in the list of living organisms.

Even now, scientists cannot decipher the phenomenal properties of Romanian trovants. All we know is that there is a connection between the processes taking place in the stones and the meteorological conditions.

In the dry season, they are all completely motionless and stay in place without changing their size. When the rainy season comes, however, the stones seem to come to life, begin to increase in size, and even move.

Nature's wonders never cease to amaze us.
Nature’s wonders never cease to amaze us.

In general, at this time the trovants look like growing mushrooms. After the rains, they reach quite large sizes. Researchers have found that a pebble the size of a grain of sand can turn into a huge stone weighing several tons in just a few years.

The largest trovants are about 10 meters high. The larger a stone gets, the slower it grows.

The most amazing thing is that the trovants have the structure of a tree – inside they have rings showing their growth, as well as the stumps. However, they consist of grit.

Most trovants are found in the Romanian region of Valcea. Locals even make souvenirs from trovants, which they sell to tourists. You could even “plant” a stone in the ground and wait for it to grow.

In 2006, in sand quarries near the village of Costeshti, a Museum of Trovants was opened. Its collection includes the most curious specimens brought from different locations in Romania. Since then, it has become one of the greatest tourist attractions in the region, if not in Romania, and attracts thousands of people yearly.

You can either pick a Trovant or purchase a souvenir and see if it will grow at your home too.
You can either pick a Trovant or purchase a souvenir and see if it will grow at your home too.

In Summary: 10 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Trovants

1. Trovants are the only stones listed as a living organism

2. They can grow up to several meters high and in diameter

3. The largest discovered Trovants are about 10 meters high

4. Their growth is connected to the rainy season

5. The exact growth rate is unknown but a small stone could reach a few meters in diameter in just several years

6. Like trees, trovants have rings that show their age

7. Scientist believe that the stones can reproduce or multiply

8. You can purchase a Trovant souvenir that could potentially grow if you moisturize it

9. Trovants grow in all kinds of shapes

10. There is an open-air Museum of Trovants in Romania


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