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How did khakibos get its name?


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March 27, 2013 3:56PM

During the Second Anglo-Boer War (1899-1902) the British wore khaki uniforms, having abandoned their bright red uniforms after the Boers gave them such a hiding during the First Anglo-Boer War (1880-1881). They thus became known as the khakis.

The British brought their horses to South Africa. On paper, these horses were superior to the Boer ponies - but they required supplemental feeding. The fodder was procured in Argentina and shipped to South Africa. It contained the seeds of tagetes minuta, a member of the marigold family, though it does not produce the showy flowers. Soon is was well-established throughout South Africa in the areas that saw action during the war. It was named khakibos (Afrikaans) after the khaki-clad soldiers who brought it. In English it is known as Khaki Bush or Khaki Weed.

The same bales of fodder also introduced the cosmos (Cosmos bipinnatus) to South Africa.