How to format your references using the Trends in Plant Science citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Trends in Plant Science. 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
Montesi, L.G.J. (2013) Planetary science. Solving the mascon mystery. Science 340, 1535–1536
A journal article with 2 authors
Miller, P.S. and Aricescu, A.R. (2014) Crystal structure of a human GABAA receptor. Nature 512, 270–275
A journal article with 3 authors
Jouvenet, N. et al. (2008) Imaging the biogenesis of individual HIV-1 virions in live cells. Nature 454, 236–240
A journal article with 3 or more authors
Gill, R.A. et al. (2002) Nonlinear grassland responses to past and future atmospheric CO(2). Nature 417, 279–282

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Stratton, J.A. (2015) Electromagnetic Theory, John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
An edited book
Güllich, A. and Krüger, M., eds. (2013) Sport: Das Lehrbuch für das Sportstudium, (1st edn) Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Schwartzman, S. (2014) Academic Drift in Brazilian Education. In The Forefront of International Higher Education: A Festschrift in Honor of Philip G. Altbach (Maldonado-Maldonado, A. and Bassett, R. M., eds), pp. 61–72, Springer Netherlands

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 Trends in Plant Science.

Blog post
Andrew, E. 02-Nov-(2014) , Orb-Weaver Spiders Stuff A Treatment Plant With A 4-Acre Web. , IFLScience. [Online]. Available: [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 (2008) Environmental Satellites: Polar-orbiting Satellite Acquisition Faces Delays; Decisions Needed on Whether and How to Ensure Climate Data Continuity, U.S. Government Printing Office.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Purdioux, L. (2015) , Predicting deception detection ability based on the concept of self-compassionate personality trait, openness personality structure, and agreeableness personality structure. , Doctoral dissertation, Capella University

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
Wagner, J. 11-Mar-(2017) , Returning for Friendship, and Drums. , New York Times, SP3

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by sequential numbers in square brackets:

This sentence cites one reference [1].
This sentence cites two references [1,2].
This sentence cites four references [1–4].

About the journal

Full journal titleTrends in Plant Science
AbbreviationTrends Plant Sci.
ISSN (print)1360-1385
ISSN (online)1878-4372
ScopePlant Science

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