Alabaster is a very soft mineral also known as gypsum. In sandy areas, gypsum sometimes forms a rosette pattern making a mineral formation called a Dessert Rose.
Alabaster was the most common gemstone used to make beads in the ancient town of Nineveh.
The 17th century Dutch artist Jan Vermeer made his luminous white paint from powdered alabaster and quartz.
US State: Oklahoma, official state rock (dessert rose)