Ocimum tenuiflorum

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Image of flower pods of Tulsi, taken at Salem, Tamil Nadu
Species name: Ocimum tenuiflorum

Ocimum tenuiflorum or Tulsi is one of the most sacred plants in Hinduism. The plant has several medicinal properties. It is found throughout India.


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Parameter Value(s) References
See complete references in the References section at the end
Names of users who have contributed to this species page Gauravm, Manasiapte
Date on which this page was first created 2010/06/07
This page was last modified on: 24 November 2010 03:59:20
Name of the species Ocimum tenuiflorum
ID on Encyclopedia of Life 480298
Synonyms Please check Binomial Classification section for synonyms.
Common English Names Holy Basil, Indian Basil
Common Hindi Names तुलसी Tulsi
Common Indian names तुलसी Tulsi (Hindi); तुळस Tulas (Marathi); तुलसी Tulasi (Assamese); Tulasi (Bengali); Thulasi (Kannada); Thulasi (Tamil); Tulasi (Telugu); Brynda (Telugu); Gaappaara Chettu (Telugu) FoI
Origins/Meanings of the common names

Taxonomy from Encyclopedia of Life

If nothing is displayed in this section, it means the EoL ID has not been defined. Please click on Edit with form button on top and follow the instructions for filling in the EoL ID

{{#EoLOnlyHierarchy:480298}} 

Taxonomy filled in form

Angiosperm phylogeny. This image is copyrighted. Rights owned by Theodore C.H.Cole (Heidelberg) and Hartmut H. Hilger (Berlin) 2010. Please obtain copyright permissions before reuse.
Click here for the PDF of the phylogeny
Taxon Value
Regnum (Kingdom) Plantae
Division Angiosperms (Unranked)
Class Eudicots (Unranked)
Order Lamiales
Family Lamiaceae
Genus Ocimum
Source of data '

Other closely related species

SpeciesClassCommon nameCommon Hindi name
Ocimum tenuiflorumEudicots (Unranked)Holy Basil, Indian Basilतुलसी Tulsi
Catharanthus pusillusEudicots (Unranked)Tiny Periwinkle, Tiny Vincaसान्ग्खी Sangkhi
SpeciesOrderCommon nameCommon Hindi name
Ocimum tenuiflorumLamialesHoly Basil, Indian Basilतुलसी Tulsi
Jasminum sambacLamialesJasmineबेला Bela, मोतिया Motiya, मोगरा Mogra
Justicia procumbensLamialesWater willow, Shrimp plantकरंबल Karambal (Marathi)
SpeciesFamilyCommon nameCommon Hindi name
Ocimum tenuiflorumLamiaceaeHoly Basil, Indian Basilतुलसी Tulsi
SpeciesGenusCommon nameCommon Hindi name
Ocimum tenuiflorumOcimumHoly Basil, Indian Basilतुलसी Tulsi

Based on classification

More details can be found in the Binomial Classification section.

Morphology from Encyclopedia of Life

If nothing is displayed in this section, it means the EoL ID has not been defined. Please click on Edit with form button on top and follow the instructions for filling in the EoL ID

{{#EoLOnlyDescription:480298}} 

General morphology

Parameter Value(s) References
See complete references in the References section at the end
General morphological features of the plant
Seed dispersal mechanism
Bloom type Annual, Perennial HimalayaHealth, USDA
Life cycle of the plant

How to identify this species

For a detailed description, refer to the General Morphology details above

Parameter Value(s) References
See complete references in the References section at the end
Type of plant Herb
Plant height
Flower color Lavender/Purple Wiki
Flower shape
Floral symmetry
Phyllotaxy of leaves
Leaf shape
Is the leaf petiolated or sessile?
Is the leaf simple or compound?

Parameter Value(s) References
See complete references in the References section at the end
IUCN Conservation Status Not Evaluated EoL
Indian States in which the species has been documented Assam,Andhra Pradesh,Andaman and Nicobar Islands,Bihar,Goa,Gujarat,Haryana,Himachal Pradesh,Jammu and Kashmir,Jharkhand,Karnataka,Kerala,Madhya Pradesh,Maharashtra,Orissa,Punjab,Rajasthan,Tamil Nadu,Tripura,Uttarakhand,Uttar Pradesh,West Bengal HimalayaHealth
Locations at which the species has been documented
Biotic zones inhabited Northeastern Himalayas, Northwestern Himalayas, Eastern Ghats, Western Ghats, Central Deccan Plateau, East Coast, West Coast, Indo-Gangetic Plain, Thar Desert and Rann of Kutchch, Outlying Islands Based on HimalayaHealth
Details about the habitat This plant is found all across India in a wide range of habitats. In the Himalayas, it is found upto 1800m altitude. Tulsi generally prefers moist soils. HimalayaHealth
Is this species native to India? Yes Das SK
Is the species indigenous/endemic to Sub-Himalayan regions? HimalayaHealth
Is the species indigenous/endemic to Western Ghats? HimalayaHealth
Is the species indigenous/endemic to Eastern Ghats? HimalayaHealth

More plants native to India

Species nameCommon nameCommon Hindi namePlant typeNative plantBiotic zone
Abelmoschus moschatusOkra, Abelmosk, Ambrette seeds, Annual hibiscus, Bamia Moschata, Galu Gasturi, Muskdana, Musk mallow, Musk okra, Musk seeds, Ornamental okra, Rose mallow seeds, Tropical jewel hibiscus, Yorka okraमुश्कदाना Mushkdana, कस्तूरीदाना Kasturi-dana, जंगली भिंडी Jangli bhindiYes
Acacia concinnaSoap podशिकाकाई ShikakaiYesNortheastern Himalayas
Eastern Ghats
Western Ghats
Central Deccan Plateau
East Coast
West Coast
Indo-Gangetic Plain
Acrostichum aureumGolden leatherfern, Mangrove fernYesNortheastern Himalayas
Eastern Ghats
East Coast
Indo-Gangetic Plain
Outlying Islands
Allium sativumCultivated Garlicलेह्सन LehsanYes
Alpinia allughasTaraTara (Bengali)YesNortheastern Himalayas
… further results

If no maps are displayed below, it means the required data is absent. Click on "Edit with form" button on top of the page to add this information.
{{#generateMap:Assam,Andhra Pradesh,Andaman and Nicobar Islands,Bihar,Goa,Gujarat,Haryana,Himachal Pradesh,Jammu and Kashmir,Jharkhand,Karnataka,Kerala,Madhya Pradesh,Maharashtra,Orissa,Punjab,Rajasthan,Tamil Nadu,Tripura,Uttarakhand,Uttar Pradesh,West Bengal|Ocimum_tenuiflorum_brahma.svg|align=center}}

Parameter Value(s) References
See complete references in the References section at the end
Does this species have any medicinal use? Yes

Other plants of the same family having medicinal use:

Species nameCommon nameCommon Hindi nameFamilyAilment typeMedicinal use description
Ocimum tenuiflorumHoly Basil, Indian Basilतुलसी TulsiLamiaceaeInfectious diseases
Pains and Inflammation
Systemic disorders
Organ-specific disorders
High content of secondary metabolites in leaves makes it suitable for treatment of several conditions. 90% ethanol extract of leaves has been shown to be hepato-protective in rats. Oral administration of this extract lowers blood sugar level in rats. Some of the main constituents of Tulsi are Oleanolic acid, Ursolic acid, Rosmarinic acid, Eugenol, Carvacrol, Linalool, and β-caryophyllene which can have anti-histaminic, anti-pyretic properties. In traditional medicine, aqueous extract of Tulsi leaves is used for common colds and fever . Tulsi powder is also used for treating jaundice and for alleviating blood pressure.
Parameter Value(s) References
See complete references in the References section at the end
General types of ailments this species is used for treating Infectious diseases, Pains and Inflammation, Systemic disorders, Organ-specific disorders
Specific ailments for which the species is used Common cold, Headaches, Stomach disorders, Inflammation, Heart disease, Poisoning, Malaria Wiki
Medicinal systems which use this plant Ayurveda, Folk Medicine, Modern Medicine HimalayaHealth,Self
Details of Medicinal use High content of secondary metabolites in leaves makes it suitable for treatment of several conditions. 90% ethanol extract of leaves has been shown to be hepato-protective in rats. Oral administration of this extract lowers blood sugar level in rats. Some of the main constituents of Tulsi are Oleanolic acid, Ursolic acid, Rosmarinic acid, Eugenol, Carvacrol, Linalool, and β-caryophyllene which can have anti-histaminic, anti-pyretic properties.

In traditional medicine, aqueous extract of Tulsi leaves is used for common colds and fever . Tulsi powder is also used for treating jaundice and for alleviating blood pressure.

HimalayaHealth,Wiki
Parts of the plant used for treatment Leaves, Seeds Himalaya Health
Names of some medicinal active compounds in this plant, if known.
Details of the active chemical compounds found in this plant
Is the molecular basis of the medicinal action known?
Details of molecular basis of action
Are the toxic effects of consumption of this plant known? Yes Himalaya Health
Details of the toxic effects of the plant species LD50 of the leaf extract in mice is 3.75g/kg, when provided intra-peritoneally. Himalaya Health
Have there been validation/clinical studies related to this plant? Yes Himalaya Health
Details of the clinical studies related to the plant species In one clinical study from 1983, it was found that in patients suffering from viral encephalitis, the aqueous extract of leaves led to higher survival rate than steroid-treated patients. The incidence of neurological deficit was also found to be low in treated patients. Himalaya Health

Parameter Value(s) References
See complete references in the References section at the end
Is this plant/plant-derived product used in food preparations? Yes User-reported
Part(s) of the plant used in the food preparations Leaves
Details of use in food preparations
Does this species have any religious significance? Yes User-reported
Religions which mention/give significance to this species Hinduism
Religious occasions
Details of religious use Tulsi, which is Sanskrit for "the incomparable one", is worshiped throughout India, most often regarded as a consort of Vishnu in the form of Mahalakshmi. There are two types of Tulsi worshiped in Hinduism—"Rama Tulsi" has light green leaves and is larger in size; "Krishna Tulsi" has dark green leaves and is important for the worship of Vishnu. Many Hindus have tulsi plants growing in front of or near their home, often in special Tulsi pots. It is also frequently grown next to Vishnu temples, especially in Varanasi.

In the ceremony of Tulsi Vivah, Tulsi is ceremonially married to Vishnu annually on the eleventh bright day or twelfth of the month of Kartika in the lunisolar calendar. That day also marks the end of the four month cāturmāsya period, which is considered inauspicious for weddings and other rituals, and so the day inaugurates the annual marriage season in India. The ritual lighting of lamps each evening during Kartika includes the worship of the Tulsi plant, which is considered auspicious for the home. Vaishnavas especially follow the daily worship of Tulsi during Kartika.

Vaishnavas traditionally use japa malas made from tulsi stems or roots, which are an important symbol of initiation. Tulsi malas are considered to be auspicious for the wearer, and believed to put them under the protection of Vishnu or Krishna. They have such a strong association with Vaishnavas, that followers of Vishnu have long been called "those who bear the tulasi round the neck"."Tulsi, which is Sanskrit for "the incomparable one", is worshiped throughout India, most often regarded as a consort of Vishnu in the form of Mahalakshmi. There are two types of Tulsi worshiped in Hinduism—"Rama Tulsi" has light green leaves and is larger in size; "Krishna Tulsi" has dark green leaves and is important for the worship of Vishnu. Many Hindus have tulsi plants growing in front of or near their home, often in special Tulsi pots. It is also frequently grown next to Vishnu temples, especially in Varanasi.

In the ceremony of Tulsi Vivah, Tulsi is ceremonially married to Vishnu annually on the eleventh bright day or twelfth of the month of Kartika in the lunisolar calendar. That day also marks the end of the four month cāturmāsya period, which is considered inauspicious for weddings and other rituals, and so the day inaugurates the annual marriage season in India. The ritual lighting of lamps each evening during Kartika includes the worship of the Tulsi plant, which is considered auspicious for the home. Vaishnavas especially follow the daily worship of Tulsi during Kartika.

Vaishnavas traditionally use japa malas made from tulsi stems or roots, which are an important symbol of initiation. Tulsi malas are considered to be auspicious for the wearer, and believed to put them under the protection of Vishnu or Krishna. They have such a strong association with Vaishnavas, that followers of Vishnu have long been called "those who bear the tulasi round the neck"." cannot be used as a page name in this wiki.

Wiki

Parameter Value(s) References
See complete references in the References section at the end
Is this plant cultivated commercially in India? Yes Gauravm
Uses for which the plant is commercially cultivated Human consumption, Medicinal use, Ornamental use, Religious use Gauravm
Plant parts of commercial value Bark, Leaves Gauravm
Products where this plant is used User-reported
Description of use
States where this plant is cultivated commercially
Best period for planting this plant
Best period for harvesting this plant
Method of propagation Seeds
Water requirement of this plant Average Gauravm
Pests and Diseases affecting this plant during cultivation
Other considerations while cultivating this plant


Pubmed Word cloud

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  • If there is an error message below, it means that there is no retrievable information available on NCBI
  • If the number of nucleotide sequences is less than 100, very little genomic work has been done on this species. A respectable number of nucleotide sequences is above 10000.
  • Most of the nucleotide sequences may come from three sources:
  1. Studies on single genes, where people try to sequence genes such as some specific dehydrogenases important,say, for tannin production
  2. Sequences of Ribosomal Internal Transcribed Spacer, whose sequence is used for generating molecular phylogenetic trees to establish species relationships
  3. Expressed Sequence Tags (ESTs) which can tell about which genes are present and expressed in the species at a particular time in the given tissue

{{#queryDB:taxonomy |Ocimum tenuiflorum }}

Parameter Value(s) References
See complete references in the References section at the end
Details of modern scientific knowledge available for this species
Are herbarium specimen available for this species?
Institutes having herbarium samples

Click here to go to Google Images

Image of flower pods of Tulsi, taken at Salem, Tamil Nadu
Vrindadevi (Tulsidevi) - a deified form of Tulsi
File:Japamala2.jpg
A sacred bead thread (Japamala) made from Tulsi wood
Tulsi plant in full bloom

References

Das SK (Journal) : Das, SK (Aug 2006),Tulsi: The Indian holy power plant, Indian Journal of Natural Products and Resources (IJNPR):5(4):279. doi=NA


HimalayaHealth (Web): Herbal Monograph:Ocimum, Accessdate=2010-06-19


EoL (Web): Encylopedia of Life entry on Ocimum tenuiflorum, Accessdate=2010-06-20


Wiki (Web): Wikipedia entry on Ocimum tenuiflorum, Accessdate=2010-06-20


USDA (Web): Plants profile for Ocimum tenuiflorum, Accessdate=2010-06-21


ENVIS (Web): ENVIS Centre on Medicinal Plants, Accessdate=2010-06-21