Wow, you're very lucky to get plants at those prices around you. The closest aquarium plant seller other than big box stores near me is 45 minutes away and their plants are atrocious. I live in rural GA, though. The ones I bought on eBay shipped free, so I only spent ten dollars. Haven't gotten them yet, they should be in tomorrow, but as long as they're not dead I'll probably be happy. I get most of my plants from aquarium plant factory, but I will buy on eBay if I see a good deal. Myself and my friends are usually on tight budgets, so I'm in the habit of passing on a deal I find, but it sounds like you have access to better. Not envious at all 👀
I'm definitely the opposite, I like high quantity easy to care for plants in my aquariums. I want a bunch of plants, that I can just stuff in my tanks and call it a day. 😂 As you've seen, I'm no aquascaper.
$60 doesn't surprise me at all, I've spoken to people in the hobby who have spent well over $100 on a rare plant they wanted. Compared to reefers, the freshwater hobby is very affordable if the rarer plants are usually under a buck. If I ever get to the point I can afford nicer set ups though, you bet your butt I'm gonna have some high falutin, sand waterfall, carpet planted, Cambodian purple dwellin, C02 supported, rare wild betta custom tank smack dab in my living room. I'm only late 20's now with a child and a college savings to fund, so don't look forward to that post anytime soon. 🤣
I really wish I had the patience to do nicer budget set ups, which I know is possible, and I'm starting to make the effort to try. But I enjoy my top fin tanks okay, and my wholesale plants. Maybe if I spend enough time on here, the nicer planted tanks will start to rub off on me.