How to format your references using the Flora citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Flora. 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
Smol, J.P., 2012. Climate Change: A planet in flux. Nature 483, S12-5.
A journal article with 2 authors
Knutson, B.A., Hahn, S., 2011. Yeast Rrn7 and human TAF1B are TFIIB-related RNA polymerase I general transcription factors. Science 333, 1637–1640.
A journal article with 3 authors
Karner, M.B., DeLong, E.F., Karl, D.M., 2001. Archaeal dominance in the mesopelagic zone of the Pacific Ocean. Nature 409, 507–510.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Bonhoeffer, S., Chappey, C., Parkin, N.T., Whitcomb, J.M., Petropoulos, C.J., 2004. Evidence for positive epistasis in HIV-1. Science 306, 1547–1550.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Valiev, R.Z., Zhilyaev, A.P., Langdon, T.G., 2013. Bulk Nanostructured Materials. John Wiley & Sons, Inc, Hoboken, NJ.
An edited book
Parkin, G. (Ed.), 2010. Metal-Metal Bonding, Structure and Bonding. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg.
A chapter in an edited book
Drechsel, P., Mahjoub, O., Keraita, B., 2015. Social and Cultural Dimensions in Wastewater Use, in: Drechsel, P., Qadir, M., Wichelns, D. (Eds.), Wastewater: Economic Asset in an Urbanizing World. Springer Netherlands, Dordrecht, pp. 75–92.

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 Flora.

Blog post
Davis, J., 2017. Immunotherapy Trial Puts A Third Of Terminal Cancer Patients Into Remission, But At A Cost [WWW Document]. IFLScience. URL (accessed 10.30.18).


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, 1994. Transportation Infrastructure: Benefits of Traffic Control Signal Systems Are Not Being Fully Realized (No. RCED-94-105). 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
Loretz, N., 2009. Human trafficking: Identification, education, and awareness: A grant proposal (Doctoral dissertation). California State University, Long Beach, Long Beach, CA.

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
Hollander, S., 2000. From Nothing, A Great Team Rises; Duluth Women’s Hockey Program Surges to Prominence in Its First Year. New York Times D1.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Smol, 2012).
This sentence cites two references (Knutson and Hahn, 2011; Smol, 2012).

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

  • Two authors: (Knutson and Hahn, 2011)
  • Three or more authors: (Bonhoeffer et al., 2004)

About the journal

Full journal titleFlora
ISSN (print)0367-2530
ScopeEcology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
Plant Science

Other styles