In Memoriam: Lydia Clayton

Tuesday, August 12 2014

Lydia Clayton, Latah County Extension Educator (Small Farms and Horticulture), died as a result of injuries received in an automobile accident on Friday, August 1, 2014. Lydia earned her bachelor’s degree in horticulture (‘04) and master’s degree in plant science (‘09) from the University of Idaho. She joined the faculty in 2009 as an Assistant Extension Professor and Nez Perce County Extension Educator (Horticulture and Small Farms). In 2012, Lydia accepted the position of agriculture and horticulture agent with the University of Alaska Fairbanks Cooperative Extension Service on the Kenai Peninsula. She was excited to return to UI this June following her acceptance of the Extension position with Latah County.

Lydia’s passion for gardening and her desire to help others came together in her Extension career. She worked closely with many farmers and Master Gardener volunteers throughout our region. Lydia was instrumental in delivering UI Master Gardener training, Cultivating SuccessTM small farm classes, Nez Perce County Banana Belt Horticulture series, and was actively involved with community gardens in several communities. She had a broad expertise in growing vegetables, soil management, composting, weed management, and direct-to-consumer farm marketing. She was co-author on two CALS publications on Community Supported Agriculture. Lydia’s work will continue to inspire sustainable food production and beginning farmers at the Soil Stewards student-run farm that she helped to develop. Lydia embraced life with enthusiasm, good humor and great joy. Her laughter and her “can do” attitude were contagious. She will be dearly missed.

A memorial service will be held at 1 pm on Sept. 6 in the Genesee city park. The family suggests that donations in Lydia’s memory be sent to Soil Stewards (contact Jodi Johnson-Maynard, farm advisor, at; 208 885-9245), Backyard Harvest ( or the food-systems based charity of your choice.