The name "Tsavorite" is derived from the place Tsavo National Park in Tanzania on the borders of Kenya and Tanzania where it was discovered. It is the only source of tsavorite garnet today.

Tsavorite garnet is of a calcium aluminum silicate chemical composition. Tsavorite is a variety of grossular garnet of intense green color. The green color in Tsavorite Garnet is due to traces of vanadium or chromium.

Due to this intense green color, tsavorite garnet can be confused with demantoid garnet, emerald and tourmaline.

It was Campbell Bridges, a Scottish gemologist who first found the green gem in 1967 while prospecting near Komolo village in northeastern Tanzania's Lelatema Hills. He was charged by a buffalo and took refuge in a ravine deep in the hills. As he was trudging up the crests of the mountain, he caught the flash of green rocks glinting in the sunlight.

However, commercial mining was not allowed then in Tanzania. After much perseverance, Mr. Bridges found a second deposit in Kenya, near Tsavo National Park in 1970. But it wasn't until 1974 that the green grossular was introduced by New York's famous Tiffany & Co. to the US market as tsavorite.

Campbell Bridges was murdered in Kenya in August 2009 at the age of 71 by an angry mob over what was believed to be a dispute over mining rights.

Garnet has a hardness ranging from 6.5 - 7.5 on the Mohs scale. It also contains high concentration of iron and/or manganese; thus, it is attracted to neodymium magnets. However, Tsavorite Garnet is one of the least magnetic of the garnet group.

Tsavorite has a cubic, rhombic dodecahedron, icositetrahedron crystal structure. It is transparent to opaque with an attractive glass-like luster. Its high level of brilliance with a refractive index ranging from 1.734 to 1.759 is used to distinguish tsavorite from the other garnets. It is said in the old legends that a garnet was a difficult thing to hide as its sparkling light was said to remain visible even through clothing. Its "fire" far exceeds emeralds.

Tsavorite for the most part comes in green to emerald green color. It can range from a bright yellowish green to deep green to bluish green. The most sought after is the intense emerald green, or a medium bluish to medium-dark green.

Tsavorite gemstone is eye-clean meaning it has no inclusions that can be seen with the naked eye unlike emerald which is heavily included.

Tsavorite doesn't have a cleavage which means it doesn't break easily. The transparent tsavorite is cut in a variety of faceted shapes, whereas the translucent to opaque material is usually cut en cabochon. Tsavorite is usually found in small sizes, with 1-3 carats being the most common.

Tsavorite Garnet has a strong red-orange fluorescence.

Tsavorite is not usually treated or enhanced in any way. Its complex chemical and physical properties also make it hard to synthesize. It is truly an extremely rare unfalsified gift of nature.

Tsavorite is related to spessartite, andradite garnets (melanite, demantoid and topazolite), almandine garnets, pyrope garnets (rhodolite) and uvarovite, all of them garnets. But it is more related to grossular garnets such as hydrogrossular, hessonite and leuco garnet.

Garnet is the Traveler’s Stone.

Garnet helps bring a successful business to its completion, encourages compassion and self-love. It has the ability to heal any blood disorder and give the wearer a healthy blood circulation. It helps to improve immunity, respiration, metabolism and detoxification.

Garnet is the traditional birthstone for January (and the alternative birthstone for May), and the second anniversary stone.

Tsavorite increases vitality and valor, boosts the energy and helps to instill a positive outlook in life.

Feng Shui believes that tsavorite carries wood energy which is believed to stimulate growth such as physical growth, spiritual growth and business growth.

Tsavorite garnet gemstones can be cleaned using only warm, soapy water and a soft cloth. Remember to rinse well and remove all soapy residue.

One last mention: Tsavorite garnet is only found in Africa, on the border of Kenya and Tanzania.