The name originates from the Latin word ‘granatus’, meaning pomegranate. This is why the stone is commonly associated with a range of red hues, however, garnets come in a kaleidoscope of natural colours! This is because they are actually a group of minerals, meaning the appearance varies widely. All of the different garnets share a common crystal structure but vary in their chemical composition.
Altogether there are at least 17 different varieties of garnet. Here are a few:
- Tsavorite is a yellowish green garnet.
- Spessartine is orange, but ranges from yellow to reddish orange.
- Demantoid are green, originally from Russia.
- Almandine and Pyrope are usually dark red.
- Grossular garnets come in a range of colours.
- The African continent supplies much of the world’s garnet, but the stone can be found in a number of countries.
- Garnet rates between 6.5 and 7.5 on the Mohs scale of hardness.
- Garnet is the birthstone for January