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Fielding Questions: Wait until spring to move Therese Bugnet shrub rose

Q. Last year I planted a Therese Bugnet shrub rose. Unfortunately, I disregarded the projected plant height listed on the tag and planted it in the front of a new flower bed. It flourished and is now overshadowing multiple plants. I would like to move it to a location at the back of this bed. When is a good time?

– Vicki Voldal Rosenau, Valley City, N.D.

A. I always chuckle at the name, which to us Germans appears to be pronounced “bug-net,” but the correct way is “Ter-ess Boo-nay.” It is a wonderfully hardy shrub rose with beautiful pink, old-fashioned blossoms. It was developed in 1950 and deserves increased attention.

As you have found, it develops into a shrub rose with nice vigor. It becomes about 4 feet wide and 5 feet tall, and would be useful to the rear of your flowerbed. The best time to move rose bushes is early spring before they leaf out. Early April works well. Cut back the tops by at least half at transplant time to compensate for root loss.

Roses moved in fall are more susceptible to winter injury. The worst time to move any plant is mid-summer when it’s in full leaf. Enjoy your wonderful Therese Bugnet rose!

Q. There is a white film on the leaves of my pumpkin and cucumber plants which then turn brown and die. What is the cause, and is there anything that can be done?

– Joel and Mary Wiltse, Lisbon, N.D.

A. Pumpkin, squash, cucumber and melon plants are very susceptible to powdery mildew, which is a fungus that covers the leaves with a gray, powdery coating. It is most severe in periods of humid weather. Eventually, the leaves begin to dry up and die. The same powdery mildew commonly attacks peonies and lilac, which is of less concern because it doesn’t permanently injure them.

But because pumpkins and cucumbers are a one-time crop, the disease can diminish or ruin production. Garden fungicides for control usually contain the ingredient chlorothalonil in the label’s fine print. It must be applied as a preventative spray before the mildew appears or at the very earliest signs. Once the gray coating has appeared, those leaves will not return to normal.

Avoid overhead sprinkling, and water in the morning so leaves dry before nightfall.

Q. My daughter-in-law is at her wit’s end trying to get plants to grow around her camper about 45 minutes outside of Detroit Lakes, Minn.

It is in heavy shade, but I think there is enough light to grow begonias and impatiens. She would also like something tall. Can you suggest anything else she could try next spring? She is threatening to “plant” plastic flowers!

– Nancy Reinke, Fargo

A. Don’t let her do it! We’re here to help. First, it’s important to start with good soil. For containers or planters use a quality mix like Miracle Gro potting soil. For ground beds, add plenty of organic material like peat moss or compost. It gives water-holding ability to sandy soil and loosens heavy clay soil.

Shade-loving annuals for containers include impatiens, begonias, lobelia, balsam, and browalia. Several coleus varieties become quite tall.

Perennials for shaded ground-level beds include daylilies, bleeding heart, ferns, astilbe, columbine, bergenia, hosta, and the groundcovers ajuga, lily-of-the-valley and snow-on-the-mountain.

Sometimes trial and error is needed to find the right combination.

If you have a gardening or lawn care question, email Don Kinzler at Questions with broad appeal may be published, so please include your name, city, and state for appropriate advice.