They say a rolling stone gather’s no Moss. How about a stone that has “moss” inside it!? Okay so there’s actually no organic matter in Moss Agate! – it is named so due to its natural mossy effect which is actually the wonderful result of a combination of materials. It’s a staple favourite of many jewellery-makers and very popular throughout the year. In truth, it’s not technically an Agate but we don’t care - we just love it here at Charming Beads and hope you do too!
Moss Agate is a type of silicon dioxide and is part of the Chalcedony family. It gets its wonderful colours from dendritic inclusions of Manganese, Chrome, and/or Iron set against a milky white Quartz field. It is formed from weathered volcanic rocks which contain filaments and other patterns likened to moss. The deep green colours and vibrant patterns within are caused by different levels of oxidation. Due to its natural green earthy look, it combines extremely well with browns and beiges.
Moss Agate has localities all over the world, with the most important commercialized deposits being in India. In fact, around 75% of all Moss Agate on the market is directly sourced from India. Other sources include Brazil, Uruguay, USA, and Western Europe.
Moss Agate was once known as "Mocha stone", named after the Arabian city of Mocha in Yemen, which housed a vast a source. Farmers in Europe utilised Moss Agate as a good luck charm. They would hang it from trees and attach it to oxen and other work animals’ horns to improve their crops during harvest. In the 18th century, Moss Agate was known as a stone of good luck in Britain and was widely utilized as a lucky charm when used in jewellery-making.
Moss Agates have an extensive history in the use of ornaments and jewellery-making. It is versatile and can be used in virtually any form of jewellery including beads, cabochons, pendants, rings, earrings, and more. You can find Moss Agate in many decorative forms such as spheres, prisms, obelisks, ashtrays and even sinks!
Moss Agates are not technically true Agates due to the non-banded formation of the stone. The stones are semi-translucent and generally have a milky white appearance, with green dendritic formations that resemble lichen and moss formations. The quartz that makes up the structure of the Moss Agate is considered a silicate with the chemical composition of SiO2. Like other members of the Chalcedony, Moss Agate possesses a hardness of 6.5 to 7 on the MOHs scale.
Moss Agate has a number of supposed metaphysical properties that are said to be conducive to healing, luck, and nature. It is associated with the Heart Chakra, the fourth primary chakra. The Heart Chakra is associated with the colour green, which in tandem with the Moss Agate, represents the colour of healing and balance. This relationship between the stone and chakra is thought to enhance the healing properties that specifically affect the heart, upper back, and lower lungs. Moss Agate is affiliated with the zodiac sign of Virgo.