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Columbus runners, gardeners get a jump start on spring

A group runs the trail along the Scioto River near Downtown Columbus. (WSYX/WTTE)

There was a lot of activity along the banks of the Scioto River on Sunday.

A large group of runners decided to head outside and get a jump on the spring season.

"Mother Nature likes to throw everything right at us, you know, snow, sun, wind, rain, but yeah, it has been a great time," said Kristen Gillenwater who passed out water at the Scioto Miles 5K, 10K and 15K.

A local runner training for the Capital City half-marathon was one of many looking forward to spring.

"We got a little sneak peak there in February when it was really warm and then winter came back, but, it makes it all that much more exciting for it to get warm outside again, so you can get out [and] get some good miles in," said Tracy Gilkey from Columbus.

They weren't alone. Many customers embraced spring on the horizon by making the trip to garden centers like Strader's on Riverside Drive.

"[I'm here to] get some plants, some stuff for my garden," said one customer. He was on the hunt for mulch and spring plants.

The experts said they have been getting a lot of questions lately.

"We get calls from customers probably on a daily basis wondering 'what should I do with my daffodils? My tulips? They are blooming, what can you do?'" said general manager Alfred Barnett. "Nothing, leave them alone."

Grass seed is the popular item recently, and now is just the time for seeding and fertilizing.

The time is also right to consider certain flowers, like pansies.

Barnett said the record warm temperatures earlier this winter boosted business early in the season, but we aren't done with the cold yet. The advice is to cover roses and trees already in bloom when temperatures drop.

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