Spraying paint and spraying agricultural crop protection products have one thing in common. They both require spray nozzles that precisely measure and distribute the flow of the fluids.
 
Bill Smart originally followed in his father's footsteps and worked for Glidden paint. He loved figuring out how paint spray equipment worked, explained Bill Smart's son Will. "He would take the equipment apart and put it back together again. He was like an engineer, he liked to tinker with equipment," Will said.
 
Smart explained that Bill decided to start his own paint spraying business in the early 1960s. But that was short lived because he later joined an independent manufacturing representative company to sell nozzles and spray equipment accessories. But when the owner passed away, Bill started his own company to be an independent manufacturers' rep.
 
After gaining years of experience selling and promoting pumps, valves and nozzles for the ag spraying industry, Bill got an idea that led to inventing a new type of sprayer. 
 
"Bill launched Greenleaf Technologies as a separate company in 1985 so that he could build and sell a 12-volt rechargeable sprayer," said Smart. "He was using Flojet Pumps and TeeJet parts, but he wanted to keep this company separate from his other business of representing these companies. Twelve-volt sprayers in the mid-80s were not common, but the pumps were used in the RV and boating market."
 
Will joined the business in the beginning to help his father build the new sprayers while Bill did the advertising. However, after Will graduated from college, both Bill and Will decided to mothball the company, and Will went to work for Bill as a manufacturers' rep. Greenleaf Technologies sat on the shelf until the 90s.
 
A few custom projects helped to resurrect Greenleaf Technologies in the early 90s. One of those projects included partnering with a company from Germany that had developed a pump for mixing two products together, which ultimately was used to clean oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico. This company introduced Bill to a new German nozzle manufacturer. 
 
"In 1995, dad met Steffen Graef of Agrotop, who had developed a new type of nozzle called the TurboDrop in 1993," Smart said. "They realized there was a market for that nozzle in the U.S. and formed a partnership for distribution in North America."
 
The TurboDrop nozzle in Europe was designed primarily to improve penetration and coverage with contact chemicals. In the U.S., it was launched as a multi-purpose nozzle that could be used at a wider range of pressures. In 1998, the new TurboDrop XL nozzle provided a more compact, economical, multi-purpose air injection nozzle.

This nozzle has become one of the company's best sellers. Another popular nozzle is the TurboDrop TwinFan nozzle, which was introduced to help producers combat Asian soybean rust.
 
Greenleaf Technologies has found success outside of the agriculture industry as well. "We have developed custom designed nozzles for the golf course market and car wash industries," Smart said.

Yet despite all of the company's success, it remains a small company based in Covington, La. Greenleaf Technologies employees five home office employees and several manufacturers' reps throughout the United States and Canada. 
 
"Today, we basically sell one product, one technology that offers greater spraying flexibility to the ag industry," Smart said. "In 15 years, we have really changed the way spraying is done in America. Even with possible new spray drift regulations, our products are so versatile, they will fit in a program to reduce drift and get the most accurate application."