There are trendy houseplants, and then there’s pure insanity. We’ve put together a list of the most expensive plants ever sold, and some of the most expensive house plants that you might see in your local rare plant shop, so prepare for some serious sticker shock!
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Variegated Monstera Varieties
Variegated Monsteras are well known as status symbols among plant collectors. However, it may surprise you that the most expensive one ever sold was an Adansonii Variegata that went for $38,000. For reference, that’s $3,000 higher than the US yearly salary!
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A Variegated Mini Monstera
A white variegated Rhaphidophora Tetrasperma with 9 leaves sold for $27,000 in New Zealand this month. This beats the record $8,000 price tag of a yellow variegated version with four leaves that had previously been bought by another New Zealander. A normal fully green mini Monstera can usually be bought for between $15 and $35, depending on location and demand.
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An 800 Year Old Bonsai Tree
This miniature white pine tree sold for a crazy $1.3 million at the international bonsai convention in Japan. Bonsai trees like this one are prized for their age, history, and certain desirable qualities such as shape, and trunk size.
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A Man Made Orchid
The Shenzhen Nongke Orchid claimed the record for most expensive flower ever sold, when it was auctioned off for about $224,000 in 2005. This flower was created by scientists in a university lab, and took 8 years of work to develop. It only blooms every 5 years!
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Large Monstera Obliqua
A bidder paid $23,000 for this rare plant, which is often described as “more hole than leaf”, because of its delicate leaves which make these plants difficult to care for. This highly sought after variety turns up lots of results online, and some seemingly reasonable prices. However, these listings are almost always a scam where sellers try to pass off the relatively common Monstera Adansonii, for the similar looking rare Obliqua.
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These plants go for $100 to $700 depending on size, and have recently seen a jump in popularity. Their leaves appear dark green, almost black, and have shimmery veins that can appear red, purple, or even hot pink. Also called the “red mambo”, this plant is native to Borneo, and has only recently been cultivated and sold, meaning that supplies are limited.
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This plant’s dark, velvety leaves and shimmery white veins make it a favorite among rare plant collectors. Sold for $100 to $200 depending on location, this plant is out of the average customer’s budget. But as rare plants go, that price is at the lower end of the range. New leaves come in orange and slowly turn green, creating a striking contrast with the rest of the plant.
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Philodendron Pink Princess
This Photogenic plant has dark green to black leaves with hot pink variegation, and can be taken care of just like any other similar philodendron. They are a favorite among plant influencers and collectors alike. However, getting one can be pricey, as small specimens with 2 to 5 leaves sell for $100 to $300, and large plants with good variegation can go for $1000 or more.
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A medium sized Philodendron Tortum in a six inch pot typically goes for around $400 in a plant store or online. These plants have a very different appearance compared to their close relatives, and some care requirements vary. For example, they thrive in high humidity and grow quickly, meaning that they need a larger space to spread out their leaves.
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A small monstera esqueleto currently costs about $500 from most rare plant shops or online businesses. This plant is in high demand because of its beautiful leaves, which resemble a larger version of the much more common monstera Adansonii. When this plant is fully grown, its leaves can be nearly three feet long!
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