An example of a silver vine with its trademark white leaf pattern
USDA

Answer: Silver Vine

Millions of North American and European cat owners buy, and even grow, catnip for their cats since the animals find the plant very attractive. When exposed to crushed fresh or dry catnip leaves, cats typically become very interested in the substance and engage with it actively for 5-15 minutes before they become fatigued of the scent.

Catnip isn’t the only plant that is a feline attractant, however. Cats are also attracted to (and enjoy rubbing against and chewing on) other plants like Valerian and Tatarian honeysuckle. Neither catnip nor these other plants can hold a candle to the allure of Silver Vine (Actinidia polygama), a climbing vine native to Japan and China. The plant, which derives its name from the way its leaves turn a whitish silver color, is a powerful feline attractant that puts cats into a euphoric state that lasts around 5-30 minutes.

Although hardly known outside of Asia, it’s the most popular cat treat in the region. While not indigenous to regions outside of China and Japan, it is cold hardy to -22°F (-30°C) and can be grown nearly anywhere, much to the delight of cats across the world.





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