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[uh-zeyl-yuh] /əˈzeɪl yə/
any of numerous shrubs belonging to a particular group (Azalea) of the genus Rhododendron, of the heath family, comprising species with handsome flower clusters of various colors, some of which are familiar in cultivation: the group was formerly the botanical genus Azalea but is now a horticultural classification.
1750-60; < New Latin < Greek azaléa, noun use of feminine of azaléos dry; so named because it grows in dry soil Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for azalea
  • Ornamental crops, such as dogwood and azalea, are harvested for landscape gardening.
  • The city's parks and recreation department has planted many small azalea gardens among the native plants.
  • She's not sure if it is an azalea or a hibiscus or what.
  • Depending on the light, the red may look as dark as dried blood or as brilliantly scarlet as a new azalea.
  • If azalea leaves are yellowish with green veins, chances are they have an iron deficiency.
British Dictionary definitions for azalea


any ericaceous plant of the group Azalea, formerly a separate genus but now included in the genus Rhododendron: cultivated for their showy pink or purple flowers
Word Origin
C18: via New Latin from Greek, from azaleos dry; from its supposed preference for a dry situation
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for azalea

1753, coined by Linnaeus from the fem. of Greek azaleos "dry," related to azein "to dry up" (see ash (n.1)). The plant thrives in sandy soil.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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