Take red. Much of the continent is red: red rocks, red soil, red dust, the Red Centre. But long before you reach the dry inland, or the Kimberley, there is red in the forests and woodlands. It is the inside colour of the bush. The ‘gum’ of gum trees is generally red. The coppery-red gimlets (Eucalyptus salubris) of Western Australia and many other species ooze red gum as if from stigmata. Sometimes when you split stringybark it pours out like blood from a severed artery. It was for this gum that the first Europeans to see them call them gum trees.