Learn about Tsavorite Garnets

Exploring the Journey of The World Rare Tsavorite Garnet: A Gemstone Guide

Meaning of Tsavorite

Tsavorite is variety of green Grossular. Grossular is the garnet species. Tsavorite is basically a calcium aluminum silicate. It has trace amounts of chromium or vandaium giving it the green color. The amount of trace emelement define the intensity of the green color in Tsavorite Garnet. The intense green hue is sometime resembles to emerald. This increases the value of tsavorite. The crystals of tsavorite garnets are generally small. Tsavorite is more rare gemstones than emerald gemstone. The faceted tsavorite garnets come under only a few carats. The large size faceted tsavorite garnets are extremely rare if they come, they come with high price. Tsavorite hardness is 7 to 7.5 at Mohs scale. 

History of Tsavorite Garnets

Tsavorite stands as one of the ancient treasures within the realm of gemstones, yet its presence in the market is relatively recent. Its origins date back over two billion years, preceding the majestic formation of Africa's highest peak, Mt. Kilimanjaro, and the reign of the dinosaurs.

In 1967, British geologist Campbell R. Bridges unearthed this extraordinary gemstone, catching the attention of Harry Platt from Tiffany & Company in New York. Named after the Tsavo Game Reserve in Kenya, where it was discovered, Tsavorite was recognized for its remarkable gemological attributes. While Tanzania and Kenya both yield Tsavorite, it is in the heart of Tsavo, Kenya, that the finest specimens with the most vivid green hues are found.

Locations of Tsavorite | Source of Tsavorite Garnet

Tsavorite garnets primarily originate from two main deposits: one near the Scorpion Mine, situated close to Tsavo National Park in Kenya, and the other in the Merelani Hills within the Arusha Region of Tanzania. The first discovery of tsavorite garnets took place in the Tuléar Province of Madagascar in 1991.

How Tsavorite Garnet Gets Its Green Color?

Tsavorite belongs to the family of garnets. Grossular is one of the calcium garnets, forming the Ugrandite group with Andradite and Uvarovite. Grossular Garnet, which is available in a variety of hues, including varied tones of brown, green, Grossular garnet., and pink, takes its name from the Latin word "grossularia," which means gooseberry, because some of the pastel green types resemble the fruit in terms of hue. In addition to Tsavorite, other members of the Grossular family include Hessonite, which is orange with occasional flashes of red and brown, Mali Garnet, which is yellowish green to greenish yellow, and Merelani Mint Garnet, which is mint green.

Vanadium and chromium, two substances also present in emeralds, give tsavorite its colour. The degree of green in tsavorite is caused by vanadium and chromium, while iron is shown by yellow tones. 

Tsavorite Stone Properties | Chemical / Technical Properties of Tsavorite Gemstones

Chemical Formula: Ca3Al2Si3O12
Hardness: 7 - 7.5
Colour: Green
Double Refraction: None
Crystal System: Isometric
Specific Gravity: 3.6
R.I : 1.738 - 1.745

Transparency: Transparent:
SG: 3.6
Luster: Vitreous to Adamantine
Cleavage: None

What are Geological Occurrences of Tsavorite Garnet?

The genesis of tsavorite garnet is intricately intertwined with the geological dynamics of the Mozambique Orogenic Belt, spanning several nations in eastern Africa. Within this belt, rocks undergo metamorphic transformations induced by tectonic forces and the convergence of continental plates, resulting in the formation of deposits abundant in precious gemstones.

The origin of tsavorite garnets relies heavily on the presence of high-grade metamorphic rocks prevalent in the Mozambique Belt, coupled with specific chemical components such as vanadium and chromium. These constituents play a vital role in imparting the characteristic green hue to garnet crystals.

The extraction of tsavorite presents significant challenges due to its remote and rugged locations. Many small-scale mining endeavors depend on manual labor and rudimentary tools to extract the gemstone from challenging geological formations, often enduring adverse working conditions.

While East Africa remains the primary epicenter of tsavorite production, trace amounts have been discovered in far-flung regions such as Madagascar, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Brazil. Nevertheless, the most substantial and coveted reservoirs of tsavorite consistently originate from the scattered deposits across East Africa.

Tsavorite Garnet Price Guidelines | Value of Tsavorite Stone

To give you an idea, in "ideal" circumstances, rings with 2+ carats might cost between $1,000 and $1,900. Prices easily surpass the $7,000 to $8,000 per carat rates for the genuinely rare 5+ carat stones. That is how uncommon they are. Tsavorite is now much more expensive than it was ten years ago (almost twice for pieces weighing three carats or more), making it a superb investment. 

The degree of the green colour, the amount of discernible inclusions, and the size of the gem are all taken into consideration when determining the Tsavorite Garnet value. Not to mention that Tsavorite is generated in metamorphic rocks under particular geological circumstances, and demand is gradually rising. 

The gemstone is frequently discovered with rocks like gneiss, schist, and marble that have been subjected to extreme heat and pressure deep below the Earth's crust.

Tsavorite primarily originates from East Africa, specifically in Tanzania and Kenya. The first recorded discovery of Tsavorite was made in 1967 by Scottish gemologist Campbell Bridges, in the Taita Hills area of Tanzania's Tsavo National Park. Later on, substantial deposits were also found in Kenya, an adjacent country. These deposits are notably located in the regions of Voi, Taita-Taveta, and Kuranze.

Treatments of Tsavorite

Tsavorite gemstones are not treated for color enhancement. , They always come in natural colors. 

Similar Gemstones as of Tsavorite

In color variations, tsavorite first resembles to Emerald . It is also close to in color Green Tourmaline. The lighter and yellowish green stone will look like that of Peridots. In intense green, tsavorite garnets look like demantoid. 

  

Tsavorite Garnet as a Birthstone

January's birthstone is a garnet. Tsavorite is from garnet mineral group. Species wise, tsavorite is a birthstone of garnet however, due to green color and resemblance of emerald, it can be used in the month of May also as Emerald is a birthstone of May. 

Learn about Birthstone here...

Tsavorite Garnet as a Healing Stone | Healing Properties of Tsavorite

Tsavorite carries various physical, spiritual and wellness benefits. Tsavorite is believed to be gemstones of discovering inner beauty within ourselves and others. It helps in regrowth of the body. It helps in the recovery of any kind of emotional trauma. Tsavorite is said to increase prosperity and helps in reducing financial problems. Tsavorite garnet is said to help in healing the heart chakra. 

However, keep in mind, these are only myths and general observation. There is no scientific proof of them.

 Beyond Beauty: Unraveling the Mysteries and Meanings of Garnet Gemstones. Learn about garnets more here....

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