So in my world, the main Antagonist has the ability to drain the life from things around her, turning them to stone in the process. That made me wonder how organic material would erode if it were petrified.
As an example, this antagonist lives in a forest turned entirely to stone—including all living organisms within: animals, insects, fungi, bacteria, etc. So anything that could naturally disturb or break down the trees and remains is gone. The only thing left to affect them is weather such as rain or hail, wind and lightning; plus thermal patterns like freezing and expansion from seasonal changes.
To give some clarification on a few things:
- The forest is in a valley between 2 mountain ranges.
- Seasonal changes do occur; the region is similar to the continental Mid U.S.
- People and animals don't go in this region except through specific paths.
- The remains are similar in density to sandstone, or other soft, porous rock.
Lastly, I was wondering about the scope and scale of this.
What time period would the forest decay over, and what would happen to the debris from the erosion? Could the forest feasibly transform into a desert over the course of about 200 years? Would rain wash much of it away, since there's no longer root structures or living plant matter to bind soil together? Finally, what's a realistic timescale for living organisms like plant matter, or bacteria even, to return to the affected region—if ever?