Definition of azalea in US English:

azalea

noun

  • A deciduous flowering shrub of the heath family with clusters of brightly colored, sometimes fragrant flowers. Technically classified as rhododendrons, azaleas are characteristically smaller than most other rhododendrons.

    Genus Rhododendron, family Ericaceae: many cultivars

    • ‘Old Jack Frost and harsh winter winds are drying out plants with shallow roots, such as azaleas and rhododendrons.’
    • ‘Rhododendrons, magnolia, azaleas and camellias are all planted here in great abundance.’
    • ‘Flowers are blooming weeks earlier than usual with Castle Howard boasting daffodils, snowdrops, rhododendrons, azaleas and crocuses.’
    • ‘But the rest of the rhododendrons and evergreen azaleas kept their rich green color.’
    • ‘The spectacular spring flowers of azaleas and rhododendrons make them among the most popular garden shrubs.’
    • ‘Add flowering azaleas, rhododendrons, and dogwood nearby for a wonderful color combination.’
    • ‘Both azaleas and rhododendrons should be pruned after flowering.’
    • ‘Smooth hydrangea, sweet shrub, and deciduous azaleas bloom under the oaks.’
    • ‘As those flowers of early spring begin to fade the azaleas and rhododendrons and later flowering cherry trees in parks and home gardens provide a feast of colour.’
    • ‘And the azalea, rare rhododendrons, oak, holly, birch and sycamore have altered only in the context of nature's sedate march.’
    • ‘Other favorite flowers are pussy willow, azalea, peony and water lily or narcissus.’
    • ‘Using shelterbelts of yew, box and laurel they began collections of azaleas, magnolias, rhododendrons and camellias.’
    • ‘With that in mind I plan a grouping of azaleas and rhododendrons in the corner formed by the house and wall.’
    • ‘These two waterways enhance the beauty of the property at any time but especially when the rhododendrons and azaleas are flowering on their banks and reflected in the water.’
    • ‘Rhododendrons and azaleas will continue to sell despite deer, black vine weevil, phytophhora, and rhizoc, but should they?’
    • ‘There is also a big selection of azaleas and rhododendrons as well as other shrubs such as potentilla.’
    • ‘Gardenias like an acidic soil and so grow well with camellias, azaleas and rhododendrons.’
    • ‘The gardens are bounded by rhododendrons as well as azaleas, while in the woodlands there are snowdrops, bluebells, daffodils and narcissi.’
    • ‘The easiest plants to move are those with thin, compact and fibrous root systems such as rhododendrons, azaleas, pieris, hydrangeas and boxwoods.’
    • ‘These are gardens for all seasons with the rhododendron dell, the azaleas and flowering cherry trees in spring, and the rose gardens in summer.’

Origin

Mid 18th century: modern Latin, from Greek, feminine of azaleos ‘dry’, because the shrub flourishes in dry soil.

Pronunciation

azalea

/əˈzālyə//əˈzeɪljə/