Moss Agate | Gemopedia

Moss agate is a variety of chalcedony with contrasting white and green moss-like patterns. Its green coloration comes from a mineral called chlorite, while the reds and browns come from manganese oxide or the oxidation of iron hornblende. Moss agate is generally cut into thin slabs and polished to best display its natural patterns. Often moss agate cabochons are used in distinctive jewelry designs.
Alternate
Names
Tree Agate
Colors
Colorless With Black, Brown, Red, Green Inclusions

Moss Agate Classification

Common Name

Moss Agate

Species

Quartz

Variety

Chalcedony

Colors

Colorless With Black, Brown, Red, Green Inclusions

Alternate Names

Tree Agate

Gemstone Groups

Key Separations

RI, SG, appearance and fracture

Comments

Moss Agate Optical Properties

Transparency

Transparent - Semitranslucent

Refractive Index

1.535-1.539

Birefringence

0.004-0.004

Optic Character

Uniaxial

Optic Sign

Positive

Polariscope Reaction

Aggregate (AGG)

Fluorescence

SWUV: Inert
LWUV: Inert

CCF Reaction

Pleochroism

None

Dispersion

Strength: none

Comments

Moss Agate Chemistry & Crystallography

Chemical Name

silicon dioxide (aka silica)

Chemical Formula

SiO2

Synthesis

Crystal System

Trigonal

Classification

Silicate

Nature

Natural

Crystallinity

Polycrystalline

Comments

Moss Agate Characteristic Physical Properties

Hardness

6.5-7

Streak

White

Specific Gravity

2.55-2.7 Typical:2.6

Toughness

Excellent

Inclusions

The stone has dendritic, chlorite or hornblende mineral inclusions that have the appearance of moss.

Luster

Vitreous

Stability

Good

Fracture

Conchoidal, Granular

Cleavage

None

Comments

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