Azalea Festival May Be Hurt By The Cold

Saturday, April 7th 2007, 8:20 pm
By: News On 6

MUSKOGEE, Okla. (AP) -- The recent cold weather in Oklahoma could negatively affect Muskogee's annual Azalea Festival. Rick Ewing, the Muskogee park superintendent, said that with temperatures dropping into the 20s at night, azaleas in Honor Heights Park that already have bloomed are at significant risk.

But he said the delicate buds still could provide color during this month's festival.

"If the bud is tight, they'll be fine," Ewing said. "If the bud has busted husk and you can see color, at that point, it is susceptible to a freeze."

Ewing said park officials planned to run irrigation overnight from Saturday into Sunday, but that doing so becomes more difficult the lower the temperature drops.

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