Gardening: Cuttings: Everything on the garden

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The Independent Online
MANY National Trust gardens remain closed until Easter, but a lecture series in London, 'Glorious Gardens', which starts on Monday and continues for eight weeks in the Purcell Room, alongside the Royal Festival Hall, gives a taste by proxy of the real thing.

On Monday, Sir Roy Strong, former director of the Victoria & Albert Museum, talks on 'Shakespeare gardens'. There is one at Charlecote in Warwickshire, now owned by the National Trust. E F Benson's Lucia had one, too, which she took just as seriously as the Trust does.

On 7 March, Roy Lancaster describes some of the rich assembly of plants in the trust's gardens, and the series finishes on 28 March when Nigel Nicolson, whose mother, Vita Sackville-West, created Sissinghurst in Kent, addresses the question, 'What are gardens for?' All the lectures begin at 6pm and finish at 7.15pm. Tickets ( pounds 5 or pounds 5.50) are available from the box office (071-928 8800).