John and Laura Ramsey write: Surprising Garnets

gem pictures 051There are still a lot of people who are surprised that garnets might come in color other than red. We’ve done our best to spread the word and have developed a lot of fans who love the varied colors available in the garnet family. The piece in the photo is a priceless mineral specimen of a Demantoid garnet. Demantoid garnet was discovered originally in Russia where some of the gems are still found. The Russian stones tend to be a very nice green similar to the color of certain Tsavorite garnets found in East Africa. Tsavorite is a color variety of grossularite garnet and the name is somewhat a marketing name.

The photo of the mineral specimen shows very nicely what a garnet crystal looks like if well-formed and not damaged while waiting in the ground for a lucky miner. The mineral specimen shown is from the Ala Valley in Italy and was the premier piece found there, The entire specimen is about 2.5 inches high and remarkable for the fact that the crystals are so perfect and nicely polished by nature. As well the piece is amazing for the fact that the garnets sit on their original matrix in which they were formed.

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