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What on Earth is Grape Agate?

What on Earth is Grape Agate?

Grape agate gets its name thanks to its botryoidal (spherical) formations of purple quartz clusters that resemble grapes. Most often, grape agate crystals are found with a range of dark to light purple colouring, but green and bi-colour green/purple agate pieces also exist and are considered the rarest.

The Physical Properties of Grape Agate

Grape agate gets its name thanks to its botryoidal (spherical) formations of purple quartz clusters that resemble grapes. Most often, grape agate crystals are found with a range of dark to light purple colouring, but green and bi-colour green/purple agate pieces also exist and are considered the rarest. In addition, some grape agate is white, grey, or even blue. The grape formations are very small and range from two to eight millimetres in size.

Its name “grape agate” is great for marketing, but it’s not necessarily correct as agate suggests a certain type of parallel internal structure. The more appropriate term would be grape quartz but given the existence of purple quartz or better known as amethyst, grape agate makes the most sense as to not confuse crystal shoppers.

The History of Grape Agate

Grape agate is a relatively new find from the Indonesian island of Sulawesi and was introduced to the gemstone market in 2016. Usually, the gemstone industry considers “recent” finds anything that’s been discovered within 40 years, so grape agate is actually very new. It’s unique shape and colour became an instant success and still tend to sell quickly. Considering the small beach area of Indonesia that it’s sourced from; grape agate is hard to come by.

Grape agate can be found in the seams of volcanic bedrock on Sulawesi, and it’s still unclear why the crystals formed in the botryoidal fashion. It appears that there is a small deposit of botryoidal quartz in Utah near the Green River that is red-ish in colour. Other than those two places, this formation of quartz has not been found anywhere else.

The Lore of Grape Agate

Thanks to the power of social media, grape agate may be new, but it is highly desirable. It’s cute and unique shape just begs for a social media share! Also, the totally unique structure of grape agate and the question marks posed by geologists about its formation leaves crystal collectors with minimal answers regarding its properties.

The big question when grape agate was discovered was “is this just amethyst?”. Considering Indonesia’s habit of giving crystals misleading names such as bumblebee jasper, which is actually calcite, the question of grape agate actually being amethyst is valid. Geologists now know that the structure of grape agate is different than amethyst, but both are technically purple quartzes.

The Metaphysical Properties of Grape Agate

Grape agate is a stabilizing stone and can strengthen your inner self. It can provide a calming and harmonizing energy which makes this a powerful but gentle stone. Grape agate is usually associated with the crown and third-eye chakras, and can help balance them. Grape agate is very useful for someone looking to grow spiritually and connect to their highest self, as its calming quality allows you to relax and open your mind.

During times of emotional stress, grape agate is suggested as a shield against negative energy and supporter of positive energies. It emits a warm energy that can be very soothing and protective when under stress. When our mind is working against us and filling us with anxiety and pressure, grape agate can heighten our intuition and help remind us of what’s really important.

When carried on your person, grape agate can maintain emotional balance and alleviate anxiety. For larger pieces of grape agate, it’s suggested to put them in rooms that you spend lots of time in. Environmentally, grape agate brings unity, encourages collective happiness and dispels irritability.

Sources:

*Hall, J. (n.d.). Grape Agate: Everything You Wanted to Know About It. Rock Seeker.

J. (2022). Grape Agate: The Curious Crystal That Looks Good Enough To Eat. https://indie88.com/grape-agate-the-curious-crystal-that-looks-good-enough-to-eat/