For the last 2 years we have been selling wholesale Amethyst and Andradite (Demantoid and topazolite) garnets from Peidra Parada, Veracruz State, Mexico. This classic amethyst locality produces some of the finest, unique forms of lustrous amethyst crystals. These crystals are formed in vesicular andesite, volcanic vugs with amethyst quartz, calcite, epidote, and various zeolites.
These crystal formation continue to amaze us with a variety of formations. Some clusters sit on the andesite host rock with a calcite, epidote, chlorite, or white zeolite at the crystal base. Other pockets will produce contact free long slender crystals. Often the crystals will exhibit scepter formations. also we see skeletal quartz often with water and other inclusions. We have been thoroughly enjoying the variables that nature produces in this region.
Then in March, some miners contacted us about a mine they had been digging some 10 miles away from the center of the Amethyst mining activity. Apparently the owners grandfather had begun this dig and found the material ugly thus closing it up. The miners told us "we found Cactus Quartz" referring to the material mined in the Broekenboutshoek area, of South Africa. We looked at his pictures and saw a unique and exciting material. We told them it was not "cactus Quartz" but since the dominant cactus of this area in Mexico is the Cholla. We said you found Cholla quartz of Veracruz.
The new material they sent me was incredible. The crystals are formed in a distinctly different host rock than their Veracruz amethyst counterparts to the east. The quartz ranges from white and foggy to a dark amethyst in color. Some of the crystals are a fast growth skeletal and hoppered formation. These form with numerous scepters and multi-directional clusters. The other types are coated with a druzy brilliant quartz topped with small secondary amethyst points near the tips of the primary points. Most of these are found with a thick iron stain but due to the secondary growth, some of the iron is included in the quartz leaving an ametrine like effect.
Stay tuned as we travel to this mine and work with the miners side by side to make sense of this new location, Cholla de Veracruz.