Saturday, April 07, 2012

This spring's stony harvest

kw: rocks, rock collecting, jasper, lapidary, photographs

A couple days ago I cleaned up the latest batch of rocks from my tumbler. These 32 stones are all Lavic Jasper that I collected in 2008. Their finished weight ranges from 88 grams down to just under 5 grams. I made closeups of five that I find particularly attractive.

This one looks the most like an agate, in close-up. Lavic Jasper is known and famed for having small fortification agates embedded in the matrix. This piece has a much larger fortification.

Here we have a breccia, that seems to have broken up when in a soft state, then re-cemented. The little bluish spots are some of the agate inclusions mentioned above.

This one has more of the blue agate showing. This feathery matrix is called plume jasper.

Much of the Lavic Jasper is dark brown, which is usually uninteresting. This piece, however, has a banded and swirly appearance that reminds me of the planet Jupiter's cloud bands. The piece is just 1.5x2 cm.

Here we have another piece that has a larger agate section. You can actually see into the stone in the dark vein across the middle.

All this variability shows why Lavic Jasper is my favorite semiprecious gemstone.

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