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
Emanuel, K. (2008) Retrospective. Edward N. Lorenz (1917-2008). Science 320, 1025
A journal article with 2 authors
Huang, C. and Grant, P.S. (2013) One-step spray processing of high power all-solid-state supercapacitors. Sci. Rep. 3, 2393
A journal article with 3 authors
Zhou, T. et al. (2014) Expression of nicotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase-influenced genes predicts recurrence-free survival in lung and breast cancers. Sci. Rep. 4, 6107
A journal article with 3 or more authors
Ansari, D. et al. (2013) CODUSA--customize optimal donor using simulated annealing in heart transplantation. Sci. Rep. 3, 1922

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Sage, A.P. and Rouse, W.B. (2011) Economic Systems Analysis and Assessment, John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
An edited book
Lumenta, C.B. et al., eds. (2010) Neurosurgery, Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Imono, M. et al. (2015) Method of Embodying the Newspaper Headlines by Using Words and Phrases in the Article. In Knowledge-Based Information Systems in Practice (Tweedale, J. W. et al., eds), pp. 51–63, Springer International Publishing

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. 16-Dec-(2013) , Man’s hand grafted to his foot for transplant. , IFLScience. [Online]. Available:’s-hand-grafted-his-foot-transplant/. [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 (2011) Commercial Launch Vehicles: NASA Taking Measures to Manage Delays and Risks, 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
Kotch, S. (2009) , Unduly harsh and unworkably rigid: The death penalty in North Carolina, 1910–1961. , Doctoral dissertation, University of North Carolina

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
Vecsey, G. 15-Feb-(2012) , The Old Guard Welcomes The New Guard. , New York Times, B10

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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