How to format your references using the Botany citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Botany. For a complete guide how to prepare your manuscript refer to the journal's instructions to authors.

Using reference management software

Typically you don't format your citations and bibliography by hand. The easiest way is to use a reference manager:

PaperpileThe citation style is built in and you can choose it in Settings > Citation Style or Paperpile > Citation Style in Google Docs.
EndNoteDownload the output style file
Mendeley, Zotero, Papers, and othersThe style is either built in or you can download a CSL file that is supported by most references management programs.
BibTeXBibTeX syles are usually part of a LaTeX template. Check the instructions to authors if the publisher offers a LaTeX template for this journal.

Journal articles

Those examples are references to articles in scholarly journals and how they are supposed to appear in your bibliography.

Not all journals organize their published articles in volumes and issues, so these fields are optional. Some electronic journals do not provide a page range, but instead list an article identifier. In a case like this it's safe to use the article identifier instead of the page range.

A journal article with 1 author
Weissman, K.J. 2008. Biochemistry. Anatomy of a fungal polyketide synthase. Science 320(5873): 186–187.
A journal article with 2 authors
Labouriau, R., and Amorim, A. 2008. Comment on “An association between the kinship and fertility of human couples.” Science 322(5908): 1634; author reply 1634.
A journal article with 3 authors
Lourens, L.J., Wehausen, R., and Brumsack, H.J. 2001. Geological constraints on tidal dissipation and dynamical ellipticity of the Earth over the past three million years. Nature 409(6823): 1029–1033.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Kim, K., Kim, M.-J., Kim, S.-I., and Jang, J.-H. 2013. Towards visible light hydrogen generation: quantum dot-sensitization via efficient light harvesting of hybrid-TiO2. Sci. Rep. 3: 3330.

Books and book chapters

Here are examples of references for authored and edited books as well as book chapters.

An authored book
Tschirhart, M., and Bielefeld, W. 2012. Managing Nonprofit Organizations. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., San Francisco.
An edited book
Puri, K. 2013. Earth System Modelling - Volume 1: Recent Developments and Projects. Edited ByR. Redler and R. Budich. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg.
A chapter in an edited book
Yang, F., Lu, H., and Chen, Y.-W. 2011. Human Tracking by Multiple Kernel Boosting with Locality Affinity Constraints. In Computer Vision – ACCV 2010: 10th Asian Conference on Computer Vision, Queenstown, New Zealand, November 8-12, 2010, Revised Selected Papers, Part IV. Edited by R. Kimmel, R. Klette, and A. Sugimoto. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg. pp. 39–50.

Web sites

Sometimes references to web sites should appear directly in the text rather than in the bibliography. Refer to the Instructions to authors for Botany.

Blog post
Taub, B. 2016, September 23. The Amount Of Sex You Have May Determine How Vulnerable You Are To Drug Addiction. IFLScience. Available from [accessed 30 October 2018].


This example shows the general structure used for government reports, technical reports, and scientific reports. If you can't locate the report number then it might be better to cite the report as a book. For reports it is usually not individual people that are credited as authors, but a governmental department or agency like "U. S. Food and Drug Administration" or "National Cancer Institute".

Government report
Government Accountability Office. 1997. IRS Systems Security and Funding: Additional Information on Employee Browsing and Tax Systems Modernization. U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC.

Theses and dissertations

Theses including Ph.D. dissertations, Master's theses or Bachelor theses follow the basic format outlined below.

Doctoral dissertation
Papp, T.M. 2017. CrashAppTM–Concurrent Multiple Stakeholder Evaluation of a DSR Artefact. Doctoral dissertation, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL.

News paper articles

Unlike scholarly journals, news papers do not usually have a volume and issue number. Instead, the full date and page number is required for a correct reference.

New York Times article
Pogrebin, R., and Cooper, M. 2017, October 4. Geffen Calls Lack of Aid For a Hall ‘Shameful.’ New York Times: C1.

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by name and year in parentheses:

This sentence cites one reference (Weissman 2008).
This sentence cites two references (Weissman 2008; Labouriau and Amorim 2008).

Here are examples of in-text citations with multiple authors:

  • Two authors: (Labouriau and Amorim 2008)
  • Three or more authors: (Kim et al. 2013)

About the journal

Full journal titleBotany
ISSN (print)1916-2790
ISSN (online)1916-2804
ScopeEcology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
Plant Science

Other styles