Actinidia kolomikta

29 May

Actinidia kolomikta (18/05/2013, Kew Gardens, London)

Actinidia kolomikta (18/05/2013, Kew Gardens, London)

Position: Full sun (will tolerate light shade at the expense of leaf variegation)

Flowering period: Late spring to early summer

Soil: Moist, well drained

Eventual Height: 8m

Eventual Spread: 8m

Hardiness: 3a, 3b, 4a, 4b, 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a

Family: Actinidiaceae

Actinidia kolomikta is a long lived deciduous climber or wall shrub with a twining habit. Its leaves are ovate with entire margins, up to 15cm long and 12cm wide. On the male plant its leaves are mid green/ white/ pink on the female they are just mid green. Its fragrant white dioecious flowers are up to 1cm across. Its green/ orange fruit appear on the female plant, are spherical, up to 2cm long and appear in autumn. Male and female plants are required if fruit are to be produced.

Actinidia kolomikta, commonly known as Kolomikta Vine, Kolomikta Kiwi or Kotomikta, is native to the Amur River valley which forms the border between Russian Far East and north east China. In its native habitat grows in clearings in mixed forests on mountain sides.

The etymological root of the binomial name Actinidia is derived from the Greek Aktinos meaning ‘rayed’, in reference to the radiate styles. Kolomikta is named after the local name for this plant ‘Kolomikta’.

The landscape architect may find the male Actinidia kolomikta useful as a wall shrub/ climber with attractive leaves. It should be noted that cats may be attracted to this climber and may damage this plant.

Actinidia kolomikta Leaf with Flower Buds (18/05/2013, Kew Gardens, London)

Actinidia kolomikta Leaf with Flower Buds (18/05/2013, Kew Gardens, London)

Ecologically, Actinidia kolomikta the flowers are attractive to pollinating insects. Its fruit are attractive to some birds and mammals.

The Royal Horticultural Society has given Actinidia kolomikta their prestigious Award of Garden Merit in 1993.

Actinidia kolomikta prefers moist, fertile, well-drained soils. It tolerates most pH of soil.

Actinidia kolomikta requires little maintenance.

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