Like collecting old sneakers or Pokémon cards, finding and caring for rare indoor plants has also become a craze over the past couple of years.
Similar to the way sneakers are valuable because of their limited availability, some indoor plants are considered treasures because of their exclusive availability on the market. Their difficult environment and exceptional and unique beauty also factor into the appeal. Many of these stunning flowers have beautiful foliage, uniquely shaped leaves, and vibrant colors the eye can’t resist.
Rare houseplants include certain monsteras, orchids, succulents, aglaonema, and many other unique and striking breeds of plants. In this article, we’ll explore what makes a plant rare, the difficulty of maintaining some plants, and some rare leaves that you can add to your collection!
What Makes a Plant Rare?
There are several factors at play when deeming an indoor plant as rare. Usually, plants are considered rare because of their scarcity and the limited number of environments they can grow in.
For example, certain wildflowers grow in a specific geographic region with warmer weather, such as the Western United States. In contrast, other kinds of plants may thrive in a more humid or cold climate.
Other plants only grow in a certain part of the world, such as a tropical region. To get them here, they must be imported. This makes acquiring specific plants from around the world more difficult because they cannot be bought at any store.
Another factor that can make a plant rare is its population, or how many actually exist in the world. The population size can vary due to conditions the plant must grow in or the plant’s vulnerability.
High Maintenance Care
Some plants may be considered rare because they are difficult to manage and require very specific conditions in order to grow. Other plants may also have short lifespans and only bloom for a short period.
One final reason some plants can be described as rare is the price tag. Because of their scarcity, some plants can cost a pretty penny. Since these rare plants need to be imported or require specific conditions, their price bumps up quite a bit.
Are Rare Indoor Plants Hard to Maintain?
Depending on the type, some rare indoor plants can be hard to maintain. Not every rare houseplant is the same, and each plant requires its own unique care to flourish.
Some plants may require more humidity to stay alive, while other plants might be able to rough it through the cold. Some indoor plants need a specific kind of soil or nutrients to thrive, and other plants (like bamboo or orchids) don’t need soil at all!
Several indoor garden plants require a certain kind of pot or a location right by a window to take in the bright sunlight. Other houseplants can survive in the dark with very minimal sun. It all depends on the family of flowers your houseplant comes from, whether it is an orchid, a succulent, a cactus, or some other kind of flower. The flower family will determine how much work you need to put in to keep your plant alive.
Even if your houseplant is easy to care for, you are most likely going to want to keep a close eye on it. Why? Because of how rare they are to come by! If you didn’t purchase the plant and it was given to you as a gift, you would still want to take the best care of it because the process of replacing the plant would be a difficult task.
Are Rare Indoor Plants Expensive?
Again, it all depends on the type of flower family your houseplant is native to. Some succulents are affordable, while there are types of monstera plants that can cost somewhere in the thousands. Some of the factors related to the price of a plant are:
- Where they are being shipped from
- The species of flower
- The rarity or availability
- The time of year you are purchasing
- The type of nursery or center in which they are grown
It’s always important to ensure that whatever nursery center is selling you a rare indoor plant, they are a reputable source and can provide you with the best bang for your buck.
What is the Rarest Indoor Plant?
One of the rarest and most sought-after indoor plants on the market is the monstera obliqua. The monstera obliqua is one of the most difficult and expensive monstera variants to take care of. Variants of the monstera obliqua can range somewhere between a couple of hundred dollars to the Peruvian form, going for $10,000.
If you take a look at this pricey plant, you will notice its green leaves are filled with holes. In fact, most of the plant is empty space. The leaves are delicate and extremely thin. So you must be gentle when taking care of this plant.
The process of growing a monstera obliqua is tedious and more of a marathon rather than a sprint. The obliqua prefers indirect sunlight and tends to grow in a soil mixture of compost, bark, worm casing, and other ingredients. These plants also need constant humidity and may have a difficult time in an air-conditioned apartment.
If you think you are up for the challenge, the only way to purchase one of these monsteras is through a private grower or collector. If you look online, you can currently find this holy grail going for thousands of dollars on Etsy and eBay.
Popular Yet Rare Indoor Plants
If you are unwilling to spend a couple of thousands on a plant with holes in the leaves, here are some other rare and unique indoor plants you can collect.
The albuca plant is a fun, unique-looking houseplant with swirly leaves. Native to South Africa, the albuca plant is relatively simple to grow and best planted in the spring or summer. The springy leaves on the albuca can bring any room to life with its quirky personality.
The desert rose, also known as adenium obseum, is a magnificent flower with bright green succulent leaves and a colorful rose attached on the top. espite having the word “rose” in the name, the desert rose can be easy to care for . This plant is similar to a succulent because it can survive off very little water and thrive indoors next to a window.
The purple shamrock brings any room to life with breath-taking burst of deep purple and bushy leaves. The purple shamrock is a part of the wood sorrel family, which consists of other plants with heart or shamrock-shaped leaves. Another easy plant to grow, the purple shamrock can live a generous life indoors provided it has indirect light and a trim every once and a while.
Another succulent, the paddle plant, is a beautiful close cluster of green with red-tipped leaves. As with any succulent, the paddle plant needs minimal water and a healthy amount of sunlight. Paddle plants are affordable, and only cost about $10 to $15.
Despite its name, the banana shrub is actually from the magnolia family. The reason it’s called a banana shrub is because the flowers smell like bananas when they bloom. These shrubs thrive in warm weather and can grow up to 15 feet.
Pencil cactus plants are more on the unusual side with chaotic-looking, stick-like leaves sprawling from all sides. Although this is a fun-looking plant to have indoors, the milky sap can be toxic. So, keep your pets away from this cactus.
Black Bat Flower
A truly unusual specimen, the black bat flower looks like it has whiskers growing from a black-colored face with many eyes. This flower is a conversation starter that will have people asking more questions than you are prepared for. The black bat flower is a tropical native, so warm conditions and low light is crucial for this flying (but not literally) creature.
Final Thoughts – Rare Indoor Plants
No matter the type of flower collector you are, there are plenty of unique, rare plants to add to your group. Some may be easy to care for and blossom into colorful flowers, while others may cost you thousands of dollars and have a bunch of holes in them. Either way, collecting rare indoor plants is a great way to expand your gardening thumb and brighten up your home.