Around 80% of cats are genetically predisposed to react to catnip which means that 20% of cats and owners are missing out on the fun – we don’t think that this is fair which is why we have started selling Silvervine (or Silver Vine). Silvervine, (Actinidia polygama) is a deciduous climbing vine grown in the high mountainous regions of eastern Asia which has long been used in China and Japan as a cat stimulant.
When exposed to powdered Silvervine a cat will display behaviours similar to those associated with catnip eg. rolling, meowing, drooling and licking. With our own cats we have noticed that because it is an unfamiliar smell (and because they are surrounded by catnip) it takes them a little while to react, but when they do they play for 5-10 minutes and will return to it periodically afterwards. Because Silvervine is sold in powdered form it is a little messier than catnip so we are selling it with a refillable Fish or Heart toy.
The Silvervine is a deciduous plant that can grow to between 5 and 6m and is susceptible to frost. The leaves are silver and white and and roughly 9cm long and 6cm wide. They flower from late June until early July. Individual flowers only last 2 to 3 days before they develop fruits that are similar to Kiwifruits except that they are orange in colour. The Silvervine that we sell is taken from these fruit galls and powdered.
This year we will be experimenting with growing some Silvervine plants ourselves so we will keep you informed as to how that is going throughout the summer.