Received this note and photo from Allen Ownings regarding bark splitting on azaleas.
“It was cold enough this winter to cause some bark split on azaleas. This was not noticed in early to mid March but has been detected in many landscapes around the state in the past week. Azalea bloom was good this spring and continues. We did, however, have several reports of sporadic to no bloom on azaleas that have traditionally performed very well. Some of the absence of flowers can possibly be attributed to the very dry weather conditions we had around many regions of the state last summer and fall – these were the prime months for azalea reproductive bud development. Non-irrigated plants, otherwise stressed plants, and plants in competition with nearby trees for soil moisture suffered.”