Say hello to peridot, the birthstone of August and our gem of the week!

A shot of rough peridot on the back, with polished varieties of peridot in the front.

Peridot is a beautiful lime green gemstone, found all over the world. Its other name, chrysolite, has been documented in many holy scriptures, such as the Bible. Even Hawaiians shared the same view of peridot, believing it was the Goddess Pele’s tears. And with the gem’s alluring green, we were more than compelled to show it off!

Peridot’s vivid lime green attracts many looking to find a good green gem to wear. It’s also known as a ‘Evening Emerald’, as peridot in low light environments takes a gorgeously vivid dark green look. Peridot’s green is all natural too: No treatment or enhancement is needed to make it that lush green that it is in jewelry. No wonder so many believed it was a holy gem.

Peridot is mined in many places around the world, and there’s a plethora of mines to buy from. Yet anyone who knows Columbia Gem House knows that we pride ourselves in transparency, fair trade, and protecting worker’s rights. So where do we choose to buy our peridot rough?

Call us conscientious, but we source our Peridot from within America; Specifically, The San Carlos reservation, located in Arizona. They have produced 75% the world’s peridot for many years and is owned by the Apache first nations people. They have one of the best selections of smaller, all-natural peridot, and only mine it when they need to.

The miners first break up the 20-40 feet high basaltic flows (or in laymen’s terms, hardened lava flow) using either dynamite or sledgehammers, at the Peridot Mesa in the San Carlos Reservation. Inside the basaltic flows are vugs: Little pockets that the crystal forms within. When the vugs are broken, the peridots are in very small pieces. Large amounts of those pieces are unusable, but what are useable come out to be the beautiful green gems we all love!

Pakistan also has wonderful peridot, as well as China. However, we can’t guarantee that the workers at those sites are safe, and we’re not always able to source where exactly the gems are from. That’s why we choose The San Carlos mine, as it’s the safest and most reliable we know of.

Many people don’t know that the majority of peridot comes from the San Carlos Apache Reservation. And who can blame them? Most sellers don’t provide buyers with necessary information on where the gem’s origin is, who the gems are from, and what the mining conditions are for those miners.

We want to make sure our gems are traceable and genuine and that we know as much about the conditions and safety are of the mine as possible. From the moment the peridot is mined to when it’s set in your favorite jewelry, we’ll provide you with the information to know where your peridot has been and who worked with it. So rejoice with us for this beautiful gem, and the ability to celebrate the miners who mined them for us!