Midwinter is a time to prepare for the busy spring period ahead. It’s a good time to take stock of your garden shed or garage where you store tools and inspect them. Some may need cleaning, oiling, repairing or replacing. Could your trusty mower do with a service? Start collecting egg boxes as these are great for chitting and getting seed potatoes off to a good start. Prune roses while dormant. As hellebore flowers emerge, remove old foliage which look raggedy now. For sweeter earlier stems, force rhubarb by covering crowns with a dark bucket to exclude light. Clean up any bird baths and feeders because the bacteria that builds up can be harmful for birds.