The Actinidia Polygama (Silver Vine) Caring Guide

Actinidia polygama, commonly known as Silver Vine or Cat Powder, is a versatile and attractive climbing plant that belongs to the Actinidia (Kiwi) family. This plant is highly valued not only for its ornamental features but also for its fragrant, showy flowers and edible fruit. With proper care, Silver Vine can become a beautiful and thriving addition to your garden, providing both visual interest and a delightful aroma. In this article, we will discuss the essential care requirements for Actinidia polygama, including watering, light, soil, and companion plants, to help you make the most of this lovely climber.

Main Caring Considerations


Actinidia polygama requires average watering to maintain its overall health and vigor. It is essential to keep the soil consistently moist but well-drained, as the plant does not tolerate waterlogged conditions. Be careful not to overwater, as this can lead to root rot and other issues. During periods of drought or hot weather, you may need to water your Silver Vine more frequently to prevent the soil from drying out completely.

Light Care

This climbing plant thrives in full sun to partial sun conditions, which means it needs at least six hours of direct sunlight daily. However, it can also tolerate some shade, especially during the hottest part of the day. If you want to encourage more abundant flowering and fruit production, provide your Silver Vine with as much sunlight as possible.

Soil Care

Actinidia polygama prefers moist but well-drained soil with a pH that ranges from acidic to alkaline. The plant can grow in various soil types, including chalk, clay, loam, and sand. It is crucial to ensure proper drainage, as Silver Vine cannot tolerate waterlogged soil. Adding organic matter, such as compost or well-rotted manure, can help improve soil structure and promote healthy root growth.

Growing Region

Silver Vine is best suited to USDA hardiness zones 7 through 9. This means it can tolerate minimum winter temperatures down to 0°F (-18°C). In colder climates, the plant may require extra protection, such as mulching around the base, to prevent frost damage.

Growth Rate, Height, Size, and Spread

Actinidia polygama is a fast-growing climber, reaching heights of 12 to 20 feet (3.6 to 6 meters) and spreads of 8 to 10 feet (2.4 to 3 meters). Due to its vigorous growth, the plant will need regular pruning and training to maintain its shape and prevent it from becoming too unruly.

Season and Temperature

Silver Vine is a deciduous plant, meaning it will lose its leaves during the winter months. It blooms in late spring to early summer, producing fragrant, white to pale yellow flowers. The plant can tolerate a wide range of temperatures but thrives in heat zones 7 to 9. It is essential to provide protection from harsh winter conditions for optimal growth and flowering.


Regular pruning is necessary to maintain the shape and size of your Silver Vine. Prune the plant in late winter or early spring before new growth begins, removing any dead or damaged branches. You can also train the vine to grow on arbors, pergolas, trellises, walls, and fences for added visual interest and support.


Actinidia polygama produces fragrant, white to pale yellow flowers in late spring to early summer. These showy blooms attract bees and other pollinators, making the plant a valuable addition to any garden. In addition to its flowers, Silver Vine also bears small, edible fruit that resembles a miniature kiwi.


Silver Vine is generally pest-resistant, but it may occasionally be affected by common garden pests such as aphids, spider mites, and scale insects. Keep an eye on your plant for any signs of infestation and treat as needed with appropriate insecticides or natural remedies.


Besides attracting pollinators like bees, Silver Vine is known for its ability to attract cats. The plant contains compounds that are similar to those found in catnip, making it irresistible to felines. This unique feature can be a fun addition to your garden, especially if you have cats of your own.

Garden Styles

Actinidia polygama is well-suited to informal and cottage-style gardens, as well as arbors, pergolas, trellises, wall-side borders, walls, and fences. Its vigorous growth and beautiful foliage make it an excellent choice for creating privacy screens or adding vertical interest to any outdoor space.

Companion Plants

Silver Vine pairs well with a variety of companion plants, including other climbers, flowering shrubs, and perennials. Some popular companion plants for Actinidia polygama include clematis, roses, wisteria, hydrangeas, and peonies. These plants can help create a visually stunning and harmonious garden display.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Silver Vine toxic to cats?
While Silver Vine attracts cats due to its catnip-like compounds, it is not toxic to them. Cats may be drawn to the plant and enjoy rubbing against or chewing on the leaves, but it should not harm them.

Can I grow Silver Vine in a container?
Yes, you can grow Actinidia polygama in a large container with proper drainage. However, it will need regular pruning and training to maintain its size and shape. Additionally, container-grown plants may require more frequent watering and feeding than those grown in the ground.


Actinidia polygama, or Silver Vine, is a versatile and attractive climbing plant that can bring beauty, fragrance, and even edible fruit to your garden. With proper care and attention to its needs, this vigorous climber can become a stunning and unique addition to your outdoor space. Happy gardening!

Martin Duran

Hey y'all! My name is Martin Duran and I am from Cali, Colombia. Since 2018 I have been learning about plants and how to take care of them. Here's is my journey... “The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness.” ― John Muir

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