Sapphires are members of the corundum family of minerals. They exist in nearly every color except red, as red corundum is called ruby.
One of the hardest minerals, sapphires are durable gemstones that have been in demand since ancient times.
© Catherine Marche - 18K white gold ring with sapphires and diamonds
• 9 on the Mohs' scale; compare to diamonds at 10 and turquoise at 5-6.
• Cornflower blue is the most popular sapphire color, but all shades of blue are found
• Sapphires exist in many other colors, including yellow, colorless white, black, white, orange, pink, purple and brown
• A variety of orangish-pink sapphire is called padparadsha, which means "lotus flower."
• Heat treatment is commonly used to deepen sapphire color and improve clarity
Where Sapphires Are Found
• Quality sapphires are found in Ceylon, Thailand, Australia, India, Burma, Africa, and Brazil.
• Some sapphires are cut into cabochons (smooth domes) and produce a star with six rays that stretch across the sapphire's surface.
• Like many other popular gemstones, sapphires can be created in a laboratory. Some synthetic sapphires are difficult to distinguish from gemstones formed in nature.
REVIEW: The Thoughtful Gardener - *Garden designer Jinny Blom’s work is defined by both her skill with plants and an ability to create a garden that responds to the site’s context, both h...