With another ‘beast from the east’ sweeping across Britain this week and bringing some perishingly cold weather and plenty of snow, many gardeners would be forgiven for thinking the best thing to do is sit indoors and wait for it to thaw out.

Of course, you may have some indoor plants to be working with and no doubt some garden magazines to read to help you draw up plans for warmer and lighter days when you can get outside for longer than ten minutes without the risk of hypothermia.

However, February will still bring lots of opportunities to get out in the garden, so it’s a good time to grab a bag of top quality soil, put on a woolly hat and head outdoors. After all, February is a month of meteorological inconsistency; there may be snowy days, but also some when the first warm flushes of spring can be felt.

The Guardian’s latest tips include focusing on the things you should be planting this month. That includes bare root plants such as roses and fruit bushes. In most cases it’s a bit too early to sow seeds, but sweet peas are an exception to the rule.

It’s also a good time to plant some bulbs in window boxes. The topsoil will certainly need sprucing up, so get some compost in there.

February is also a good time for a pre-spring clean up of windows, tools and your water butt.

At the same time, where some plants do spring up their first shoots, be ready to cover tender leaves up to avoid frost.

While this month is a capricious one on the weather front, there are at least some things you can predict; the days are getting lighter at an accelerating rate, which means you can spend more time out there. Even though the weather sometimes seems like its stuck in the depths of winter, spring is getting nearer than you think!

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