One of the most desirable colors in garnet is the rich mandarin orange found in the best Spessartine garnets. While the discovery of a deposit of these mandarin garnets made them famous in the early 1990’s, there was actually a much earlier find that had some historical prominence. In the early 1900’s Southern California was a global center of colored gemstone mining, with the discovery of tourmaline mines in the Pala and Mesa Grande areas followed rapidly by the discovery of the new gem species Kunzite and Morganite in the same region. Not long after a deposit of brilliant orange garnets was found outside Ramona, California. One pegmatite dike–the Hercules Dike at the Little Three Mine–has since produced a significant volume of fine orange Spessartine garnets. The heydays of this mine were the early 1900’s which was then followed by a renaissance period of mining from the late 1960’s to the late 1980’s. Since that time the mine has been closed to any significant production, and garnets from this locality have become something of a collector’s gemstone. This intense mandarin orange Spessartine garnet is 100 percent natural and untreated in any way and represents some of the finest color and clarity to be found from the Little Three Mine. This garnet is nearly flawless; there appears to be no visible inclusions, even when examined with a 10x loupe.
This gem is faceted in our custom “Serendipity” brilliant oval design, and cut to high precision; the result is a glittering beauty of a gem. The garnet weighs 2.10 carats and measures 8.1 x 6.5 mm. It would make quite a statement as the center stone of a unique ring!