Is it crazy to pay this much for a Christmas Cactus?

Laura RobichaudNovember 16, 2012

I have an opportunity to purchase this true Christmas cactus for $100 off Craigslist. The lady said she would deliver it. I'm thinking I'm crazy, but it's so beautiful.

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Well, I belong to the Church of Yes, and yes, you should - it might be expensive (rather, it is expensive) but I've never seen a larger plant for sale - that's a monster plant. But is the lady selling it also going to place it for you, in addition to delivery? That fee could be not inconsiderable.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 11:30AM
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Laura Robichaud

I think she's bringing her daughter over to help her. I think the three of us can get it placed in the house. When people are selling 6 cuttings of these on eBay for $30, then I guess it's not TOO nuts. It was started in 1970 from cutting from her grandmother's plant. Wow. I'll root anything that breaks off it and if anyone wants me to send some along, I will.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 11:37AM
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Wal-mart has small 4" pots for $2.88. They are budding and look good. Could buy several and put together in one pot.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 12:23PM
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If you like it and want it go for it.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 1:06PM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Well Laura, that is a huge plant, & quite good looking & healthy; I don't think I'd pay $100 for ANY plant, but that's just me.

LMiller, are you sure what you see for sale is a CC, not a TC? It's not often one sees these for sale, am guessing what you're referring to is a TC.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 1:10PM
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I would think it all boils down to if you feel comfortable paying $100 for a plant. Since she's delivering it, you don't have to worry about shipping costs, so that's a plus. Although, think I'd cry if something happened to a plant that I spent that much on. CCs are hard to come by (I've never seen one) and with that age and condition, I think it makes it that much more rare, but I think it all comes down to if you feel comfortable spending the money. Hope that helps.


    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 1:48PM
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If You want it , can afford it, Then Buy it.
That is a really large plant. I see easy $100.00 worth of cuttings on Ebay and you still couldn't see where you did the cuts.LOL
Last year on ebay a small Brazil variety sold for $175.00 and then the same person bought a 4 section unrooted cutting of the same color for $125.00. Now THAT was crazy.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 3:03PM
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aftermidnight Zone7b B.C. Canada

If you really want it, can afford it, I say go for it. Life's too short, there's worse things you could be spending your money on. I wouldn't think twice if it was coming my way.


    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 5:23PM
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Laura Robichaud

It's here. It's gigantic. WOW.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 10:04PM
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Laura Robichaud

I put the bottle of Windex in front of it for scale.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 10:08PM
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Terrific plant. Great buy!

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 10:14PM
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Congrats - I'll now look forward to pictures of it in flower and you repotting it.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 10:44PM
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Laura Robichaud

I'm looking forward to repotting it in a bark based mix or gritty mix in the spring. According to the lady, it was repotted last year. Fortunately, the mix isn't hardened and its in good health, so it can wait until the weather gets warm to put it in a new pot. I'm sure I'll need all your virtual support when I take on that task!! It's a monster!

    Bookmark   November 17, 2012 at 9:37AM
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Very nice indeed! If I had the money and the chance to get it~~oh yeah! and as far as room goes, I would MAKE room for it! lol.

Looks like a very good buy to me~~ :)Congrats!!

    Bookmark   November 17, 2012 at 12:04PM
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Laura Robichaud

Looking at it this morning, I think it was worth every penny! Thanks for all the encouragement. Had I taken a pass, I think I would always regret it.

    Bookmark   November 17, 2012 at 1:05PM
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I'm glad you decided what you wanted to do, in the end only you could decide whether or not the money was worth the plant or not. I'm also really glad to see someone with such love of plants got it. It went to a good home. Keep us updated. I can't wait to see blooms.


    Bookmark   November 17, 2012 at 8:48PM
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Laura Robichaud

Just an update. The Christmas cactus has made a good adjustment. It worries me that I have not had to water since I got it. The skewer is showing it's still damp. In the spring, I'll repot into a bark-based mix. Until that time, I'll be VERY careful about watering.

It hasn't dropped the two buds it came with, surprisingly.

I think it likes the south-facing window. It'll go outside in the summer

    Bookmark   December 4, 2012 at 10:46AM
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And the vista is muy fantastico. You're now convinced you made a sounder investment than buying a few shares of Apple, right?

    Bookmark   December 4, 2012 at 11:36AM
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Laura Robichaud

Well....we actually had Apple stock...bought it at $25 and sold it at $50. We were psyched because we doubled our money. hehehe

I'm very happy I bought this plant. I sold a bunch of things to an antiques dealer that I wasn't using anymore, so it was sorta free. :)

    Bookmark   December 4, 2012 at 11:53AM
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First off, what a beautiful Christmas Cactus! I'm glad it's taken so well to its new home and that you're happy made the plunge.

I was fortunate enough to buy a Christmas Cactus back in October. I immediately repotted it into a fantastic mix suggested by Josh and proceeded to worry over when I would have to water it next. I think I went about 3 weeks without watering it because the dowel would still come out damp whenever I checked it. About a week ago, I began to get concerned because the plant started to look a little wrinkly and the leaves got really quite thin. I checked the dowel again and it was still slightly damp. Given that I knew I hadn't watered it since I originally repotted it (the mix was freshly made and moist), I decided it needed a good, thorough watering. The leaves are still a little wrinkled and limp/thin, but again, I think it's a result of under watering and will eventually correct itself once I figure out the plant's watering cycle.

I used to be a chronic over waterer, but that was back when I had everything potted up in MG. Now, I think I'm a bit of a chronic under waterer! I still find it quite hard to judge when the time is right to water even with the old standby's of checking the weight of the pot and the dowel method.


    Bookmark   December 4, 2012 at 2:35PM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Laura, it looks just great, bet you're happy you bought it, looks quite happy!


3 wks w/out water sounds like too long a time for these, they're not Arid land Cacti that need to go bone dry btwn waterings, they're jungle, tropical cacti, that get rained on often. I meant to comment on another thread (I think it was to you, & that these plants do better in plastic pots than clay (dries them out too fast)). Perhaps read up on the care of these to see they're tropical, not arid & as such, want water more often.

Laura, I'd water yours too, a good drink 'til it comes out the bottom. Can you tell if the pot it's in is clay or terra cotta? If it was repotted last year I might wait another year before you repot it. Not sure why one would want to I doubt it'll need it by then.

    Bookmark   December 4, 2012 at 6:55PM
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I never feel terrible or doubtful for paying big bucks for the efforts of someone else.

How much is your personal time worth? How long would it have taken you to grow out a cutting into a plant that size? How much time, effort, fertilizers, nurturing skills, etc? You get my point. You just paid a small vig to get big results. Picture that plant in full bloom. It will be worth every penny you paid, and everyone who sees it, will enjoy its beauty. That's priceless.

Life is short, and excess can be great at times. ENJOY YOUR NEW PLANT!


    Bookmark   December 4, 2012 at 8:11PM
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Laura.... Lucky you! I would of done the same thing.

If that was cut up into several pieces and sold on E-bay, unrooted, you could fetch hundreds. Such a beauty. I hope it grows well for you because it is taking up prime space in your home and it should be grateful for that:-)


    Bookmark   December 4, 2012 at 8:43PM
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PG - thanks for the advice. :) I'm aware that these are jungle cacti and require frequent watering and a fast draining, light medium to grow in. In my paranoia over not wanting to over water it, and relying solely on the dowel method, I let it go longer than I should have. I know better now, though, and am slowly getting accustomed to being able to water more readily without the fear of root rot.

Laura - I agree again with what everyone else above me has said. Please post pictures when it comes into bloom. I can't wait to see it!


    Bookmark   December 4, 2012 at 10:01PM
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Now that's an Impressive plant!

I just asked myself if I'd prefer a 100 Dollar bill or that plant, and had to say the plant. Many more hundreds will come your way before another plant like that!

I like the fact that with a little effort, you can recoup ALL of your original investment back too, from selling off cuttings!


    Bookmark   December 4, 2012 at 11:12PM
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Laura Robichaud

Frank, I didn't look at it that way, but you're right. Of course my husband wouldn't look at it that way so mum's the word.

PG, It's in a glazed clay pot. Even though it was repotted last year by the previous owner, it's In typical potting soil. I'd like to get it in a bark mixture and have it stay outside all summer. Roots are coming out the bottom too. BELIEVE ME, I'm NOT looking forward to repotting it.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 8:52AM
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What a find to get a lush thick 42+ year old Christmas cactus! I hope it blooms for you this year - it should be gorgeous in full flower. I like the pot stand you have it in too since it allows the plant to cascade below the pot bottom.


    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 1:49PM
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Hi..I too have a very old cc that a friend gave to me...
It was as big as yours last spring...but a storm with high wind gust throw it across the patio and so its small but it will grow again and a few people on here got lots of cuttings too...the plant you have is great and I like the way you have it there on its own little stand and lots of others arround the bottom....thanks for sharing again....linda

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 3:38PM
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shauntavia(z8 GA)

thank plant is BEAUTIFUL!!! i have gotta get me one!

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 4:57PM
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