The common red garnets are an iron-rich form called almandine. Although almandines are common, local varieties are almost always too flawed to be used for jewellery.
Calcium-rich garnets found in New Zealand are a red form called hessonite, found in South Westland, and hydrogrossular, found on beaches such as Orepuki in Southland. Hydroglossular contains some water and polishes up well.
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Te Ara - The Encyclopedia of New Zealand
Photograph by Alastair McLean
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