Phosphophyllite (fos-foh-feel-aight) is a rare mineral, notable for its unique color and fragile composition. Phosphophyllite comes in at only 3.5 on the Mohs hardness scale.
Phosphophyllite's fragile and brittle nature make it hard to cut. Often, large pieces are left uncut as they are too valuable to break. The name phosphophyllite is derived from the Greek word "phyllonfor" meaning leaf. This is in reference to phosphophyllite's perfect leaf-shaped cleavage patterns.
Phosphophyllite is only mined in a few parts of the world. Originally, the best samples came from Bolivia, but this is no longer the case. Phosphophyllite is also mined in the north eastern United States, and in south eastern Germany. It is highly prized by collectors, and samples of it do not come cheap.
It is unfortunate that phosphophyllite isn't quite a "household name" in the mineral world. This is likely due to its rarity and high price tag. Internet pictures are free though.
I simply cannot get enough of this mineral's color. It reminds me of mint chocolate chip ice cream.
Examples of mineral cleavage.
Phosphophyllite clearly stands out against the other variety of rock.