3.1" Sparkling Cactus Amethyst Crystal Cluster - South Africa

This is a 3.1" wide cactus/spirit quartz (amethyst) crystal cluster from the Boekenhoutshoek area of Mpumalanga, South Africa. It features intricate "cactus" towers, which enhances the overall aesthetics of the piece. The slight orange coloration is a result of iron oxidation.

Cactus quartz, often also referred to as spirit quartz, is a variety of quartz characterized by second-generation druzy crystals growing on the faces of larger quartz crystals. The small second-generation crystals point away from the prism and their orientation is not related to the crystallographic orientation of the central crystal. Cactus quartz is currently only known from the Magaliesberg Mountains region of South Africa, and comes in a variety of shades ranging from white to deep purple to orange colorations. The deep purple amethyst points are the rarest and most coveted by collectors.

Amethyst is a purple variety of quartz (SiO2) that owes its violet color to natural gamma irradiation, iron impurities, and the presence of trace elements, which result in complex crystal lattice substitutions. It is considered a semi-precious gemstone, and just two centuries ago was considered to have a value on par with diamonds, sapphires, and rubies. The largest and best known amethyst deposits occur in southern Brazil and Uruguay, where they are found in hydrothermally-formed geodes, but many localities around the world produce an amazing variety of amethyst crystals and formations. They are almost always formed in medium- to high-temperature geological settings.
Quartz var. Amethyst
Boekenhoutshoek area, Mpumalanga, South Africa
3.1 x 2.75"