Gardens of change

 After hosting more than 350 weddings in front of their bright yellow farmhouse on a 24-acre farm, Catherine and Tom Mix are retiring from the wedding business.


Catherine Mix said after the last wedding at The Cutting Garden, planned for Sept. 9, she will begin to phase out most of the gardens and shift the business focus to art and hosting small events with fewer than 50 people.


While it has been a pleasure and a joy to host weddings for the past 13 years, Mix said, it has never been a goal of hers to run a wedding venue.


"We fell into it," she said.


The Mixes took an early retirement from Boeing in 1998 and purchased the farm off Woodcock Road. They built the farmhouse, two outbuildings and a greenhouse and planted U-pick gardens, lavender gardens, xeriscape (non-irrigated gardens) as well as a beautiful garden area around the farmhouse and the outdoor wedding area.


Mix said she will keep the xeriscape gardens and the ones surrounding the farmhouse but take out the others.


"I will always grow flowers," she said, adding it just wouldn't be on the same scale. They do not plan to sell any of the land.


Mix is looking forward to focusing her energy on her art. The farmhouse always has served as her gallery with her studio upstairs, she said. But with a May-October wedding season, she had to put art on hold and pick it back up again every year.


"I'm going to stop splitting my focus," she said.


The Cutting Garden will become a destination fine arts gallery and possibly a cooperative gallery for professional artists, according to a press release. Mix also is accepting commissions for portraits and local landscape scenes as well as teaching pastel and painting classes this fall through Peninsula College. The venue will continue to host small events of up to 50 people.


For more information on the classes or the venue, or to find out what plants and wedding items are for sale, e-mail Catherine Mix at


Reach Amanda Winters at
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