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Hardy Kiwi Foliage a Stunner

Hardy Kiwi foliage

The hardy kiwi vine (Actinidia)  is possibly the only plant I ever wanted specifically for its foliage. I first saw it at Lakewold Gardens, a historic estate and gardens near Tacoma, Washington. In that beautiful garden it was growing neatly on a trellis and I was fascinated by the pink, white and green leaves.

It grows exuberantly on our shed next to the hen house and is in need of a serious pruning that will require a good ladder as well as good pruners. I bought mine from Miller Nurseries who promised its hardiness to -25 degrees many years ago. It has not only survived our Heath winters, which are ever milder, but also the depredations of the hens who have turned the Shed Bed into their own Lido, scratching and taking  luxurious dust baths there.

The hardy kiwi will fruit, but you must have a male and a female plant. I only have a single vine because I was not interested in fruit only in the beautiful foliage. I have a friend who bought a male and female, but one died. Unfortunately he forgot which was which so he had to buy two more to be certain of getting the necessary cross pollination. This is a lesson to remember. Sometimes good record keeping can really save you money.

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