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Submission Preparation Checklist

As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.
  • The submission has not been previously published, nor is it before another journal for consideration.
  • The submission has been read and approved by all authors.
  • A cover letter is included that addresses the originality and significance of this contribution.
  • All figures and tables are uploaded as separate files.
  • The article text is in Microsoft Word or RTF document file format.
  • The text adheres to the stylistic and bibliographic requirements outlined in the Author Guidelines.

Author Guidelines


The Annals publishes original articles in systematic botany and related fields. Papers whose purpose is the establishment of new nomenclatural entities in vascular plants and bryophytes should be submitted to Novon for consideration. Novon manuscripts must fully state and justify the reasons for proposing nova. These may include detailed comparisons with similar taxa, short keys to similar taxa, illustrations to similar taxa, and mechanical nomenclature reasons, among others.

Conditions for Publication

Because the electronic file will be used by the printer for typesetting, it is important to adhere to the items listed in the format section of the checklist. Authors’ electronic files are prepared by the editors and sent to the printer for formatting. Every electronic file sent by the author should be clearly labeled with the first author’s last name, the first four letters of the taxon involved, and an indication of the file’s contents (i.e., text, figure, table, etc.). Manuscripts that have been reviewed before submission will be subject to the full normal review process initiated here. Manuscripts not properly prepared may be returned for revision prior to review.

Page Charges

Page costs are $80 per page, although charges may sometimes be reduced or waived. Changes in proof made by authors will be billed non-negotiably to the author at $3.50 per line changed. There is a non-negotiable fee of $20 per figure if authors choose to replace any figures in the proof stage.

Manuscript Submission

Manuscripts must be submitted using our online submission and tracking system. For Annals, go to http://annals.mobot.org/. For Novon, go to http://novon.mobot.org/. Both journals no longer accept submissions via email, but you may send questions to the editor at annals@mobot.org or novon@mobot.org.

  1. General
    • Text is in English or Spanish on numbered pages.
    • Manuscript is submitted as Microsoft Word file via http://annals.mobot.org/ (for Annals) or http://novon.mobot.org/ (for Novon).
    • Electronic file of manuscript is labeled with first author’s last name, first four letters of the taxon involved, and an indication of what the file contains, e.g., Celis Cipu text.doc, Celis Cipu Figure1.tif, Celis Cipu Table1.doc, etc. Low-resolution images or PDFs are suitable for the review process, but are not acceptable for final submission to the printer. Click here to see the printer’s electronic illustration requirements.
    • Authorities, abbreviated according to Brummit & Powell’s Authors of Plant Names (APN), are provided for species’ names the first time they are mentioned in the Abstract and in the text; OR they are provided in a table that includes names of species. Authorities are also listed for every species appearing in a key. The APN standard has been maintained through the International Plant Names Index (IPNI) author database, http://www.ipni.org/ipni/authorsearchpage.
    • Figures are not embedded in Word file.
  2. Format of Text
    • Text is in Times New Roman.
    • Right-hand margin is not justified, and words are not hyphenated there.
    • One space is inserted after periods, colons, question marks, and all other punctuation marks.
    • First sentences of paragraphs are indented with a tab.
    • To indicate ranges of numbers, for example, page numbers, 20–23; measurements, 5–7 mm; altitudes, 1500–2500 m, insert an en dash from the Word symbol menu.
    • A single hyphen is used in hyphenated words, for example, 9-nerved, oval-triangular.
    • Common Latin words or phrases are not italicized (e.g., et al., i.e., sensu, etc.).
    • Only taxon names at the rank of genus and below are italicized.
    • Correct accents, umlauts, and other diacritical marks have been included.
    • All figures and tables are cited in the text and are numbered in the order in which they are to appear.
    • Figure legends are included in Word file after Literature Cited.
  3. Style
    • Recent issue of the Annals or Novon is used as a model.
    • Chicago Manual of Style, latest edition, is used as a reference.
  4. Abstract & Key Words
    • A one-paragraph abstract precedes the text. Papers in Spanish have an English abstract in addition to a Spanish resumen.
    • The abstract is concise (one paragraph) and includes (for Annals) brief statements about the paper’s intent, materials and methods, results, and significance of findings; (for Novon) a list of the nova and succinct summary of the basis for their creation.
    • A brief list of key words immediately follows the abstract.
  5. Taxonomic Treatment
    • Species entries are organized as follows: Accepted name (including publication and type details), Latin or English diagnosis (if necessary), description, distribution, summary, discussion, specimens examined or paratypes (for new taxa). The discussions are parallel and follow the same order, e.g., diagnostic characteristics, distinction from similar species variation, distribution and ecology, nomenclature and typification, uses.
    • One paragraph per basionym is used as follows: Taxon author, literature citation, type citation, e.g.: Beilschmiedia latifolia (Nees) Sa. Nishida, Ann. Missouri Bot. Gard. 86: 680. 1999. Hufelandia latifolia Nees, Syst. Laur.: 674. 1836. TYPE: Peru. Locality not indicated, 1835 (fl.), Matthew 1433 (holotype, E!; isotypes, BM!, E!, K!, LE not seen, OXF not seen).
    • Synonyms based on different types are placed in separate paragraphs, each beginning with the basionym, followed by other combinations (if appropriate), and citation of the type.
    • A Latin or English diagnosis for each new taxon is provided, immediately following the new taxon’s name and type designation and immediately preceding the English or Spanish description of the new taxon. The International Code of Nomenclature for Algae, Fungi and Plants (Glossary) defines a diagnosis of a taxon as “a statement of that which in the opinion of its author distinguishes the taxon from other taxa.” The journal’s suggested style for the Latin diagnosis of a new species might include “Haec species . . . affinis [similis], sed ab ea [eo] . . . distinguitur [differt],” or in place of “Haec species” beginning with “Species nova” or equivalent wording. Suggested style for the English diagnosis of a new species might include “This [new] species is related [similar] to . . . , but is distinguished [differs] from it by . . .” or equivalent wording. Reference to diagnostic characters elsewhere in the text (abstract, discussion, key, etc.) is not acceptable in place of the formal diagnosis.
    • For species with infraspecific taxa: Description and discussion are composite (incorporating all infraspecific taxa) and parallel with other species descriptions. Descriptions of infraspecific taxa are parallel with one another (in the same species). All synonyms are listed under the appropriate infraspecific taxon.
    • Descriptions: Descriptions are parallel, within a given rank. All measurements are metric. En dashes are used for parenthetical extremes: “peduncle (8.2–)14.3–28(–31.9) cm long,” unless intermediate values are not expected: ovary with (2)4(6) locules. Length × width are given in the following manner: lamina 36.4–82.8 × 9.1–16.8 cm.
    • When relevant, nomina nuda, misapplied names, and superfluous names are included in the discussion following the description, but are not part of the formal synonymy.
  6. Citation of Types
    • Exclamation points are used for specimens examined, and types not seen are indicated as such (e.g., MO!, US not seen).
    • If specimens in addition to the holotype are listed, their location is specified. For example, “holotype, MO!; isotypes, F!, NY!.”
    • For type collections, initials of collectors are included.
    • Lectotype designations are included together with an indication of where they were designated [author, year, page number, and herbarium of deposition; e.g., C. J. W. Schiede 159 (lectotype, designated by Stevens [2000: 256], P!; isotypes. . .)]. This reference is listed in the Literature Cited. If the author of the paper submitted is making the lectotypification, the phrase “designated here” is used.
    • Isotypes of entities described in Novon are to be deposited at MO whenever sufficient material is available.
  7. Tables
    • Create tables using the Microsoft Word “Insert Table” feature.
    • Tables are neat, double-spaced, and clearly presented.
    • Captions are typed double-spaced as paragraphs at the tops of the tables.
    • Each table starts on a separate page.
  8. Abbreviations
    • Periods are used after all abbreviations (which are minimized) except metric measures, compass directions, and herbarium designations.
    • When dates are given as part of collection information, three-letter month abbreviations are used, except for months with four letters, which are spelled out in full.
    • States are not abbreviated, and cities are spelled out. [St., as in St. Louis, is acceptable.]
    • Periodicals are abbreviated according to B-P-H (Botanico-Periodicum-Huntianum) and to B-P-H/S (Botanico-Periodicum-Huntianum/Supplementum).
    • Authors’ names are abbreviated according to Brummit & Powell’s Authors of Plant Names.
    • Book titles are abbreviated according to Taxonomic Literature, edition 2, but with initial letters capitalized. Book titles are spelled out in the Literature Cited.
    • If an item does not appear in B-P-H or TL-2, or if these references are not available, its title is fully spelled out.
    • Herbaria are abbreviated according to the most recent edition of Index Herbariorum.
    • Abbreviated forms are not used for references in the text, except when citing the names of plants. If it is necessary to cite a particular page in the text, the form Smith (1998: 12) is used.
  9. Specimens Examined
    • If many specimens were examined, those cited in the text are limited to ca. 12 manuscript pages.
    • If there are a large number, an index to specimens examined is placed at the end of the paper, following the Literature Cited. It is arranged alphabetically by collector, followed by collection number, followed by the number of the taxon in the text. Names (including initial(s)) of first and second collector are provided, “et al.” if three or more.
    • Specimens are cited in the text as follows: Additional specimens examined (or Selected specimens examined). MEXICO. Oaxaca: Sierra San Pedro Nolesco, Talea, 12°37′N, 85°14′W, 950–1100 m, 3 Feb. 1987 (fl), Jørgensen 865 (BM, G, K, US). [Dates and reproductive status are optional but are omitted from longer lists.] Countries are run together in the same paragraph, e.g., COUNTRY A. Major political division: . . . COUNTRY B. Major political division: . . . Separate paragraphs are used for major continental regions within major political divisions.
    • Herbarium accession numbers are useful to add, especially for type collections. If herbarium accession numbers are provided, use a hyphen between the herbarium acronym and the accession number, e.g., US-2660464, MO-3150111. In the absence of an accession number, the barcode number may be cited and included, but the word barcode is inserted in brackets preceding the number, e.g., NY [barcode] 123456.
  10. Specimen Vouchers and Genetic Sequences
    • If the paper presents original data, associated herbarium vouchers are cited. [Vouchers for seed and/or other collections should be included where pertinent. Dependent on the paper, reference to the original wild source may be required.] Vouchers are also cited from common names, and uses are taken from specimen labels.
    • Herbarium vouchers state the collector and number, herbarium in which the voucher is located, and a clear annotation that the material represents the voucher for the study in question.
    • Nucleic acid or protein sequences corresponding to equal or greater than 50 nucleotides are entered into an appropriate data bank, e.g., GenBank/EMBL. The accession numbers are provided before publication. [Long sequences (exceeding two pages) will not be routinely published.]
    • Data sequences and tree files should be provided in Nexus format or alternatively submitted to the TreeBASE web site (<www.treebase.org>).
    • Author accepts responsibility for establishing the accuracy of information provided.
  11. Keys
    • Keys are clear, have been checked carefully for consistency with the descriptions, and are dichotomous. Leads of each couplet are parallel.
    • Indented keys are preferred.
    • Infraspecific taxa are keyed separately, not in species keys.
    • Authorities are listed for every species appearing in a key.
  12. Literature Cited
    • The Literature Cited contains full citations of all references cited in the text.
    • All entries in the Literature Cited are cited in the text.
    • Spelling of author(s) name(s) and years of publication have been double-checked.
    • All entries have been verified against original sources, especially journal titles, accents, diacritical marks, and spelling in languages other than English.
    • Periodicals are listed as follows: Author’s last name, initial(s). Year. Full title of article. Journal abbreviated as in B-P-H/S. Volume: pages. No parenthetical part numbers after volume numbers are given unless each part is paginated separately. For example: Andersson, L. 2001. Margaritopsis (Rubiaceae, Psychotrieae) is a pantropical genus. Syst. Geogr. Pl. 71: 73–85.
    • For more than one author, this style is followed: Author’s last name, initial(s), second author’s initial(s), last name & third author’s initial(s), last name. For example: Morrone, O., A. M. Anton & F. O. Zuloaga.
    • Books appear as follows: author’s last name, initial(s). Year. Full Unabbreviated Title. Publisher, City of Publication. For example: Zeven, A. C. & J. M. J. de Wet. 1982. Dictionary of Cultivated Plants and Their Regions of Diversity, 2nd ed. Centre for Agricultural Publications and Documentation, Wageningen, The Netherlands.
    • For an article within a larger work, this style is followed: Author(s). Year. Name of the article. Pp. 00–00 in Name of the editor(s), Full Title of Larger Work. Publisher, City of Publication. For example: Soderstrom, T. R. & R. P. Ellis. 1987. The position of bamboo genera and allies: A system of grass classification. Pp. 225–238 in T. R. Soderstrom, K. W. Hilu, C. S. Campbell & M. E. Barkworth (editors), Grass Systematics and Evolution. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, D.C.
    • Citations of work “in prep.,” unpublished theses and dissertations, and similar references to inaccessible sources have been eliminated or kept to a minimum. They are not necessarily included in the Literature Cited.
    • References are listed alphabetically by author and grouped as follows: single author, then first author + one, then three or more authors. References are then listed chronologically within each grouping (i.e., all Smith single-author references listed chronologically; then all Smith + one author references listed chronologically; then all Smith + two or more authors listed chronologically). For example:

      Smith, A. 1985.

      Smith, A. 1987.

      Smith, A. & B. Jones. 1981.

      Smith, A. & H. Wong. 1986.

      Smith, A. & B. Jones. 1989.

      Smith, A., B. Jones & R. Johnson. 1979.

      Smith, A., A. Brown & G. Foster. 2000.
  13. Illustrations
    • Electronic figures are labeled with the first author’s last name, the first four letters of the taxon, and “. . . Figure1.tif”, “. . . Figure2.tif”, etc. The file extension clearly indicates what type of file it is.
    • Scale bars appear on illustrations, photographs, and maps.
    • Magnifications/reductions are not indicated in captions.
    • Electronic scans may be pre-sized to fit either column width (2-5/8 in. or ca. 68 mm) or full-page width (5-1/2 in. or ca. 140 mm). [Maximum size for printed illustrations is 5-1/2 × 8-1/4 in.]
    • Figures are numbered in Arabic numerals in the order of their citation in the text. Parts of figures are labeled with capital letters.
    • Photographs are prepared according to the printer’s requirements. [Click here for the Guide to Digital Art, Allen Press.]
    • Figures are grouped into composite plates when possible; edges of photographs are abutted.
    • Edges of figures are squared.
    • Maps include reference to latitude and longitude and are bounded by a fine border.
    • Scanning electron micrographs are free of conspicuous charging.
    • Axes on graphs are all labeled.
    • Captions provide all explanatory text. Captions are separate from other text, one paragraph for each group of figures, and following the style in current issues of the Annals or Novon.
    • Artist or photographer is credited in the caption.
    • Symbols on maps are legible, and reduction has been taken into consideration.

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