This week I've chosen Chrome Diopside as the star of the show. This vivid green stone was only discovered in 1988 in Russia's Eastern Siberia. Mining is sporadic due to the extreme winters they experience, often lasting eight months or more (& we complain about our weather!), and so can only be mined for three months of the year.
This stunning gem glows with green... when the colour is less than ideal it tends to be from too much green than too little. Above two carats, the green can be so dark, it can look almost black. Unlike many other gems that are heated, irradiated or oiled to bring out the colour, this is not the case with Chrome Diopside - this is all natural!
Unlike many gemstones, Chrome Diopside has two "planes" (where the crystalline structure is weaker) and so when cut from the rough, approximately 90% is lost! To put that simply, to get ten carats of cut an polished Chrome Diopside, 100 carats of rough is needed!
So if you're looking for a green gemstone, don't automatically choose an emerald....give this little beauty a try, it has twice the amount of sparkle!