A houseplant with just nine leaves has sold for a record-breaking $25,000 (US $17800) on a New Zealand auction site.
Bids for the “very rare white variegated Rhaphidophora Tetrasperma” closed Sunday night, rising in the last four minutes as bidder ‘foliage_patch’ battled the eventual winner, tagged ‘meridianlamb’.
Trade Me spokesperson Millie Silvester told CNN that the plant was “the most expensive houseplant ever sold” on the auction site.
“After a heated bidding war in the auction’s final minutes, the rare plant had over 102,000 views and more than 1,600 watchlists, which just goes to show how much Kiwis adore houseplants,” she said in a statement emailed to CNN.
In New Zealand dollars, the bid was $27,100 (US $19000 )
Silvester said the average price for an indoor plant on Trade Me had jumped from $34 in May 2019 to $82 last month with rare varieties commanding “massive prices.”
“Houseplants have become the ‘it’ item over the last couple of years, we’ve seen prices creep up and up as more Kiwis jump on this new trend,” she said.