They are crusty, hard plants without true stalks or leaves that grow in gnarled patterns, most with tendrils like colorful hair that wave in the wind. Except for the tendrils, shalebark seems more rock than vegetation.
Types of Shalebark
Clusters of a bulbous variety grow with outcroppings that look like heaps of clothing, with folds that spread like fans. Others grow out like horns.
'Plated stone', is the most prominent type of shalebark plant. A fitting name, as it grows in thin, round sections that pile atop one another, like plates in a cupboard. From the sides, it looks like weathered rock that exposes hundreds of thin strata. Tiny little tendrils grow up out of pores and wave in the wind. The stonelike casings have a bluish shade, but the tendrils a yellowish one.
Another type of shalebark is described as finger-like protrusions that grow up into the air from a central knob alongside the plated stone.
Shalebark has a symbiotic relationship with a type of snail, which cleans it by eating off the lichen and mold it accumulates. Specific types of Shalebark might have a similar symbiotic relationship with cremlings.
Many gardens described in The Way of Kings were designed with walls of cultivated shalebark. The front grounds of Roshone's mansion were observed by Kaladin to include shalebark. The palace gardens of Kharbranth were observed by Shallan to include varieties of shalebark.