Picture of World’s Largest ‘Tulsi Tree’ from Karnataka Hills: Fact Check


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About Picture of World's Largest 'Tulsi Tree' from Karnataka Hills
Picture of World's Largest 'Tulsi Tree' from Karnataka Hills

Story:

Amazing Picture: World’s Largest Tulsi Tree in Biligirirangana Hills of Karnataka

Other Versions

(Hindi)

1. अदभुत, अकल्पनीय, अविश्वसनीय, दुर्लभतम । तुलसी वक्ष आप ने कभी नहीं देखा होगा….

2. दुनिया का सबसे बड़ा तुलसी वृक्ष 🚩
आमतौर पर तुलसी के पौधे घरो मे पलते हैं.. हम इतना जानते हैं… लेकिन कर्नाटक के Camarajanagara जिले में Yalandur तालुक Biligirirangana के गाँव मे ये तुलसी का पेड़ हैं

(Telugu)

ఇది మహారాష్ట్ర లో మరిచిన అతి పెద్ద తులసి వృక్షం
చూడగానే ఐదుగురికి షేర్ చేయండి మీకు అంతా శుభమే జరుగుతుంది

Fact Check:

Various stories circulating online in different languages purport to show an amazing – Tulsi Tree – the World’s largest – found in Biligirirangana Hill region on Karnataka border. The viral picture of the alleged Tulsi tree also appears with messages citing different locations in India. Despite the claims, what you see in the picture is not any Tulsi tree or plant.

Origin of Story about Large Tulsi Tree

In early July 2019, the picture in question appeared on Helo app website helo-app.com along with similar claim in Tamil language. Subsequently, the Tamil story appeared in several image sharing and social media platforms as a miraculous Tulsi tree. From a distance, the picture in fact appears like a larger version of sacred and medicinal Tulsi plant Hindus worship as Goddess.

About Picture of World's Largest 'Tulsi Tree' from Karnataka Hills

It looks like a large tree version of regular Tulsi plant fully loaded with flowers (see picture below). However, Tulsi, i.e. Holy Basil is basically a plant species (Ocimum tenuiflorum) not known to grow as a tree. The Tallest Basil Plant (different cultivar, not Tulsi), according to Guinness World Records website guinnessworldrecords.com, measured 3.34 m (10 ft 11.5 in) in July 2012. It was grown by Anastasia Grigoraki in Greece. There are no reports of any World’s largest Tulsi tree in Karnataka or any other place in India or elsewhere. If any such find is true, it would have easily grabbed media attention, considering Tulsi plant is worshipped in India.

Image of Tulsi plant with flowering
Tulsi plant with flowering
Image of Tallest Basil plant (Tulsi) in Greece
Tallest Basil plant (Tulsi) in Greece

Not Tulsi Tree or Plant

A close look at the picture, zooming in, reveals what you see in the picture is not Tulsi tree or plant for that matter. Tulsi leaves are relatively small in comparison to the tree in question. It could be a Mango tree or some similar one fully loaded with flowers formation – giving it the appearance of a ‘Tulsi tree’ from distance. Like shown in pictures below, Mangoes in fact come as numerous species of tropical trees belonging to flowering plant genera.

Image of Mango tree in flowering stage
Mango tree in flowering stage
Image of Mango tree in flowering stage

So, the claims saying the viral picture shows an amazing Tulsi Tree, the world’s largest, are just hoaxes. Helo is a social app to share the latest and top trending jokes, memes and WhatsApp statuses among others. It is possible the picture message carrying couple of funny hashtags is a prank to make the message viral on social media platforms.

Hoax or Fact:

Hoax.


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Prashanth Damarla
Debunker

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