I'm a little confused about the endings / cases. I've seen both я and ль on the end of february... is ль the nominative? In which case, are we using я here to signify accusative or genitive?
Yes, "february" here is in the genitive, as it is the beginning OF february.
February in the nominative: февраль
February in the genitive: февраля
this is confusing , how do i know when something begins in february , for example , how do i say , starts/begins in february in russian.
«SOMETHING начинается в феврале» if it regular. If you want to say it about future, «SOMETHING начнётся в феврале» will be better in many cases (present projection is not generally common in Russian).