Finding Crystals in Your Backyard

How to Find Crystals in Your Backyard (All You Need to Know)

In Lawn & Garden, Tips by Jamie

You can find crystals in your backyard using a few basic tools, like a shovel, a sifter, and a container. I’ll discuss and show you how to find crystals in your backyard, what crystals you’re likely to find, as well as how to stay safe when digging. 

What Types of Crystals Can You Find in Your Backyard?

Quartz

Quartz crystals are one of the most frequently encountered gemstones in the dirt. Most people are unaware they are looking at quartz when they first see it.

The most prevalent type of quartz is clear quartz. Quartz crystals can be nearly totally transparent or may contain white smudges or streaks within the crystal, lending them a milky look.

A quartz crystal typically has the shape of a hexagonal prism, but this shape varies according to the crystal’s size. Some resemble nothing more than a shard of gleaming gravel.

Topaz

Topaz comes in a broad array of colors due to impurities. Topaz is most frequently found in golden yellow or brown hues, and it is frequently used in excellent jewelry. It is particularly well-liked as a less expensive alternative to diamonds.

The color of a natural topaz usually indicates its grade and value. Pink topaz is very rare and valuable. 

Malachite

Malachite is a semiprecious stone that presents a dark green and opaque appearance. It has rings and dots that create random and attractive patterns throughout the surface. It is a mineral found within limestone and is frequently used to create beads and carvings.

Malachite is a relatively inexpensive stone that is frequently purchased and sold in quantity. Malachite’s quality is often evaluated by its vibrancy and the prominence of its spots and markings. Because malachite pieces are typically one-of-a-kind, this stone’s beauty is subjective.

Garnet

Garnet is a brilliant red crystal that is frequently used in jewelry. While garnets are most commonly associated with the color red, they can come in a variety of other hues, including yellow and pink.

It’s difficult to determine a garnet’s quality simply by looking at it, as garnets can contain a variety of impurities that darken and dull its colors. Garnets of higher quality have brighter colors and a more transparent tint.

Opal

Opal is a valuable gemstone characterized by its oval form and smooth look. These gleaming stones are opalescent (they exhibit a rainbow iridescence). And might be considered one of the most unusual crystals in their natural state. Opals are generated when silicon dioxide and water combine.

Agate

Agate is a stone with brown or red hues characterized by its marbled or striped appearance. While agates come in various colors, the most common form is reddish-brown agate.

You can identify the stone by holding it up to the light. If you notice a semi-translucent stone with a reddish-brown color and visible banding or striping, it’s likely an agate. 

Obsidian

Obsidian has a glass-like texture and is often black, but can be green or brown in color. It’s traditionally formed when molten rock cools and hardens, resulting in the formation of a smooth stone.

Obsidian is valuable for its antiquity more than its appearance, as all obsidian is dark glossy black. Due to the fragility of obsidian due to its glass-like appearance, locating earlier pieces might be challenging. The most precious and rarest kinds of obsidian date back more than a few million years.

Tourmaline

Tourmaline is a gemstone typically found in black but can occur in virtually any color.

These gemstones may also be multicolored. And their hue may vary depending on the angle at which they are viewed in the light. These semiprecious stones are frequently used in jewelry designs such as necklaces and bracelets.

If you believe you’ve discovered a real tourmaline in your backyard, the simplest approach to determine its authenticity is to hold it up to artificial light. If the stone does not change color when moved, this could be a sign that it is genuine tourmaline. You should, however, clarify this with a specialist to be certain.

Jade

Jade is a green-colored stone that is also available in two other colors, namely purple and white. Since ancient times, our forefathers and mothers have used jade to create sculptures, jewelry, and even tools. 

Jade is a matte, dark mint green color that occurs naturally. To the touch, genuine jade should be entirely smooth and cold. It is one of the most precious stones on the planet due to its huge popularity in China. The finest jade has a deep jade hue and is referred to as “Imperial jade.”

What’s the Difference Between a Crystal and a Gemstone?

The distinction between a crystal and a gem is that a crystal is composed of atoms or ions arranged in a specific order and structure, whereas a gem is an extremely valuable mineral that occurs only in a small geographical area. 

A crystal may be referred to as a gem, while a gem is not referred to as a crystal. Salts are a type of crystal, whereas ruby, emeralds, diamonds, and pearls are all types of gemstones.

What Tools Do You Need to Find Crystals in the Yard?

A shovel is the first tool you should get. Your backyard soil type and the area to be covered will dictate the type of shovel to use. A simple hand shovel or trowel with a rounded or sharp cutting edge would be sufficient to break up the topsoil.

round digger shovel

Whether you’re dealing with soft or hard topsoil, a round digger shovel is an ideal tool for the job. The rounded tip penetrates the dirt with ease.

Other useful tools include:

  • Gardening gloves to protect your hands.
  • A pickaxe so that you can pry stuff.
  • A garden spade.
  • A sifter, to remove large materials from the soil.
  • A bucket made from either metal or plastic.

How to Search for Crystals in Your Backyard?

Digging

Crystals can be discovered pretty much anywhere on your landscape. Apart from dirt, crystals can be found mixed up with gravel or within a rocky environment. 

When it comes to locating specific types of crystals, it is region-dependent. There are several locations where crystals are not typically found, although they may contain intriguing rocks. It is advisable to conduct research in your area to determine which crystals are most popular.

Dig carefully with a round digger shovel to ensure you won’t crack any crystals. 

Sifting

When screening your soil, you can use a variety of various-sized sifters. There are smaller handheld sifters that work quite well for screening through the dirt fast. 

Rather do it yourself? You can create your own sifter out of hardware cloth and wood. You can build a larger sifter if you intend to dig deeper and want to cover a huge area at once.

Cleaning and Storing the Crystals

Cleaning Method #1

Place the crystals in a plastic container. Completely fill the container with warm soapy water. To avoid scratching or chipping the crystals, use liquid soap. Allow the crystals to soak overnight in the container. If the crystals contain unusual dirt and pebbles, soak them longer.

Take the crystals out of the container and thoroughly rinse them. It is preferable to perform this outside or over a pail of water indoors. Clean them thoroughly using a toothbrush and warm soapy water. 

Cleaning Method #2

Wipe your crystals clean with your fiber cloth before placing them in your container. While you search, a regular bucket will suffice to collect the crystals. Ensure that your container is strong, regardless of whether it is metal or plastic.

Storing

Once your crystal is clean, you can exhibit it alongside your other treasures in a display case. Crystals can be exhibited throughout your home, and you’ll have a tale to tell about how you discovered them in your backyard. 

Where Will You Likely Find Crystals?

If you’re looking for limestone deposits in your backyard, a good place to start is with any limestone deposits you may have. Mining in regions where a large amount of rock has formed may turn out to be a success. 

Additionally, if you have any regions with water in or in your garden, this could be the ideal location to unearth some former treasures. Creeks, rivers, and coastal environments are all examples of these areas. 

It is extremely likely that you will not find anything, as it depends entirely on luck and geographical position. However, if you never look, you will never discover any prospective diamonds hiding in your own backyard.

What to Watch Out for When Digging for Crystals

In the United States, millions of miles of underground utility cables run beneath residential lawns. Cutting into one of these cables by accident can disrupt crucial services or perhaps result in a tragic accident. 

Fortunately, there are viable methods for accurately locating subsurface utility wires prior to digging for crystals.

Remember that some of your lines are marked while others are not. The marked ones are usually natural gas supply lines, water and sewer mains, cables, and wires. Unmarked lines typically include lawn irrigation systems, security systems, or landscape lighting systems. 

Sewer And Water Mains

Water pipes are usually located around 12 inches deep into the ground. Some exceptions include whether the mains are found 12 inches below the frost line. Sewer mains are usually color-coded with green, while water lines are blue. 

Underground Powerlines

Typically marked with red, underground power lines are another thing you want to avoid when digging for crystals. They are often found at a depth of at least 24 inches below ground level. 

TV or Internet Wires

TV, internet, and phone wires usually fall under the “communication” category. They are usually marked with orange and are found at a 12-inch depth. 

Natural Gas Pipes

Natural gas pipes, petroleum, steam, oil, or other gaseous materials are marked with the color yellow. Just like electrical wires, they can be found at least 24 inches deep into the ground. 

Lawn Irrigation Systems

These systems are not usually marked, but they are color-coded with purple if they are. Hitting one of these could disrupt your entire irrigation system. 

What to Do When You Find Backyard Crystals?

The very first step is to clean the diamonds. Remove all dust, soil, and muck from the stones thoroughly, as it may be difficult for us to identify the type of crystals we have discovered if the gems are not cleaned properly.

After thoroughly cleaning the jewels, we must identify them. We’ve already explored the many sorts of crystals and their associated qualities and appearance. As a result, after we understand the different types, it will be simple to recognize them.

If you are fortunate enough, you will undoubtedly discover the treasures in your backyard by following the indicated procedures and tools. To do this duty, one must be curious.

Can You Sell Crystals You Find in Your Backyard?

If the crystals are found on your property, they technically belong to you, making it okay to sell them.

There are numerous internet marketplaces for selling rocks. The best option will depend on the crystals you have, how many of them you have, and their shape. 

Selling rocks online offers the advantage of readily reaching a large number of purchasers, which increases your chances of receiving the full worth of your rocks.

You should use more caution when selling more precious items. If you want to sell something you’ve created, Etsy is an excellent platform that can generally connect you with a buyer, especially for more specialty products.

Final Thoughts

Once you know how to find crystals in your backyard, you can gather the right tools and get to work! While not all finds are valuable, they can be sold online or to different specialty shops. You can also infuse them with energy and use them as lucky charms or showcased throughout the house.