A New York City man says the elephant-headed Hindu god Ganesh appeared to him in his backyard in the shape of a 4-foot-tall purple flower.

The amaranth plant in the backyard of Sam Lal's home in the Queens section of the city began to resemble an elephant's head and trunk in August after growing all summer.

The 60-year-old Hindu man tells the Daily News it appears to have healed him. He says pain he suffered from a bone spur disappeared when the plant grew.

Queens Botanical Garden spokesman Tim Heimerle says horticulturists there have never seen an amaranth take an elephant-like shape. He says the trunk-like formation is "not a natural thing."