Lapidary Gemstones and Crystals – Create With Rare Beauty
Aquamarine is the birthstone of the month of march. This pale blue gemstone is a variety of the mineral beryl, along with the green emerald, pink morganite and yellow heliodore. Beryl can form as these gemstones or as a non-gemmy variety. Beryl is an unusual mineral in that it contains beryllium, an element that does not like to go into mineral structures. These minerals form in magma as one of the last minerals to crystallize as the magma cools. At this point, elements like beryllium have no choice but to become incorporated into minerals with the last remaining elements – which usually means a lot of silica. These minerals form in pegmatites – silica rich rocks with large crystals that forms as the magma cools very slowly. The longer the magma cools, the bigger the crystals get and the more unusual elements get incorporated. There are some crystals in pegmatites that are as big as a large tree – over 20 feet in length. The different colors are a result of small inclusions of different elements in the mineral. In aquamarine, the blue color comes from iron.
Be careful when choosing gemstones as they are often color enhanced by using heat treatment. This is considered an acceptable practice and is still considered a natural stone, although the seller is supposed to notify the customer of any variations to the stone.
This aquamarine is 100% natural and has not been heat treated.