Calgary

Some Calgarians will let the sun shine even where it doesn't on naked gardening day

Saturday's forecast calls for a mix of sun and cloud and the temperature to reach about 20 C, which is quite nice weather to do some gardening — in the nude.

This Saturday marks the 13th annual day of planting in the buff

Jenny Hayles holds a flower basket during the 2017 World Naked Gardening Day. (Submitted by Colin Hayles/Twitter)

Saturday's forecast calls for a mix of sun and cloud and the temperature to reach about 20 C, which is quite nice weather to do some gardening — in the nude.

This weekend marks the 13th annual World Naked Gardening Day — held the first Saturday in May — and some brave Calgarians will be taking part.

"I love it. I think it's a fun idea, especially after a long winter, to get out there and get some vitamin D," Jenny Hayles, who will be gardening in the buff with her husband, told the Calgary Eyeopener.

"It's body positive, too. You're not looking in the mirror, you have a task at hand, it makes it fun."

Jenny, a photographer by trade, and her husband Colin, a horticulturist, took part for the first time last year. They used their day job skills to produce a series of social media posts.

"In this day and age, we see a lot of images of perfection and they may or may not be real with all the filters people can put on their own photos, as well as Photoshopping in magazines. It's fun just to be human and be yourself and be out. With a task at hand, you're not thinking about looking in the mirror and what you perceive as imperfections," said Jenny.

Colin Hayles taking part in the 2017 World Naked Gardening Day. (Submitted by Colin Hayles/Twitter)

The couple's home in the northwest community of Hawkwood is somewhat conducive to nude gardening.

"We back onto a park so we have no neighbours looking over, and our house is set back further than the other yards, and we're completely fenced in. So unless anybody is peeking over the fence, we should be good," said Colin.

"It's body positive, it's fun, it's a way to bond. There's a whole community."

Friends who rent an apartment will also be taking part — on their balcony.

"It's a way for people to connect, have fun, get outside," said Colin. "It's more than just taking your clothes off and gardening, there's a whole funness and freeness about it."

Jenny Hayles says gardening in the buff can be a freeing experience. (Submitted by Colin Hayles/Twitter)

Colin has a simple rule for safety.

"No power tools and be careful with the pruners," he said.

And participants can take the nudity as far as they feel comfortable.

"It's World Naked Gardening Day, but I don't think anybody is going to hold it against you if you have to put on a hat or some gloves," said Colin.

"You're allowed some protective gear. On a more serious note, the most important thing is the sunscreen."

Started in 2005, World Naked Gardening Day was held in September for the first two years, then moved to the first Saturday in May.

"We had a long winter. It's time to cut loose and have some fun in the spring," said Colin.

Calgary police remind participants that it's illegal to be naked in public view, even if you're on your own property. 


With files from the Calgary Eyeopener.