Flying Disc Ranch

Robert Lower

In 1979, when Robert Lower purchased the parcel where Flying Disc Ranch exists today, it was barren desert that had never been farmed before. He leveled it, piped it, and planted it, and eventually created a forest-like oasis producing dates, citrus, figs, pomegranates, aloe, and table grapes. The date palms must be dethorned, pollinated, tied down, bagged, harvested, and pruned twice at different points in the year. When the medjool dates are thinned, a worker can spend up to six hours in just one tree! These delectable fruits are a wonderful alternative to other sweets, and are a good source of dietary fiber and potassium.

Although the ranch is not currently certified organic, Robert has used ecological practices and has never used non-organic sprays or petroleum-based fertilizers.

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Markets:South Berkeley (Tuesday)Downtown Berkeley (Saturday)Season:
September–JuneProduct: Dates (11 varieties)Farmer's Name: Robert LowerMailing Address: P.O.Box 201
Thermal, CA, CA 92274
Phone: (760) 399-5313
Website: http://www.flyingdiscranch.comFarm Location:
Thermal, Riverside County, CADistance From Berkeley:
500 milesSoil Type: Layer cakeWater Source: Municipal, wellsAbout the Farm:
Owner Robert Lower operates the farm with Pedro and Carolina Medina, Christina Kelso, and as many as 15 employees during peak season. They use “eco-dynamic” practices inspired by biodynamic ideas.Organic Certification: Not Certified Organic, biodynamic practicesFertilizer: Rock dust, compost, chicken manureWeed Control: NonePest Management: Predatory birds, snakes, beneficial insectsAcreage: 10 acres