How to format your references using the Plant and Soil citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Plant and Soil. 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
Torres-Reveron A (2009) Hispanic people start leaping over barriers to better jobs. Nature 460:949
A journal article with 2 authors
Moore P, Clayton J (2003) To affinity and beyond. Nature 426:725–731
A journal article with 3 authors
Gong Y, Mo C, Fraser SE (2004) Planar cell polarity signalling controls cell division orientation during zebrafish gastrulation. Nature 430:689–693
A journal article with 5 or more authors
Zhao J, Ye H, Huang K, et al (2014) Manipulation of acoustic focusing with an active and configurable planar metasurface transducer. Sci Rep 4:6257

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Deutsche Gesellschaft für Geotechni, Laackmann K, Balthaus H, et al (2015) Taschenbuch für den Tunnelbau 2015. Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim, Germany
An edited book
Day JW, Kemp GP, Freeman AM, Muth DP (eds) (2014) Perspectives on the Restoration of the Mississippi Delta: The Once and Future Delta. Springer Netherlands, Dordrecht
A chapter in an edited book
Donegani S (2013) Il medico di medicina generale. In: Bellardita L, Magnani T, Valdagni R (eds) Il tumore alla prostata: Paziente, familiari e medici: esperienze narrate. Springer, Milano, pp 37–43

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 Plant and Soil.

Blog post
Andrew E (2015) 2014, The Year That Was: Health + Medicine. In: IFLScience. Accessed 30 Oct 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 (1995) Space Shuttle: Declining Budget and Tight Schedule Could Jeopardize Space Station Support. 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
Duggimpudi MB (2017) Object Ranking Algorithms for Improved Decision Making. Doctoral dissertation, University of Louisiana

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
Detrick B (2017) Where Nobody Knows Your Name. New York Times D13

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Torres-Reveron 2009).
This sentence cites two references (Moore and Clayton 2003; Torres-Reveron 2009).

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

  • Two authors: (Moore and Clayton 2003)
  • Three or more authors: (Zhao et al. 2014)

About the journal

Full journal titlePlant and Soil
AbbreviationPlant Soil
ISSN (print)0032-079X
ISSN (online)1573-5036
ScopePlant Science
Soil Science

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