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Resources for your research in horticutlure


This page provides a summary of the Library resources and research tools we explored in the HORT 4480 library orientation. I will keep it up for you for the remainder of the semester. Check back from time to time for updated content. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions, or if you'd like me to include additional links you found helpful.

Celia Brinkerhoff, Hortliculture Librarian

Best Databases for your Topic

Start your research in one of these three subscription databases. The library has access to the full text of most of the journals indexed here.

Also consider the following Index to look for articles, some of which will appear in full text.

Citation Tracking and Journal Title Search

Found an article on a reference list and want to see if the Library has it? Use the Journal title search box below, and enter the name of the journal (NOT the article title). If the Library subscribes to that journal, the resulting page will link you to the database where it can be found.

Make sure you know how to decipher a citation! The key is first to identify the name of the journal, then the publication date.

Look at the following citation. What is the name of the journal? And what year was the article published in? If the name of the journal is abbreviated, use your best judgment to determine it, or do a quick Google search.

Godefroid S, Koedam N (2007) Urban plant species patterns are highly driven by density and function of built-up areas. Landsc Ecol 22:1227–1239



If the Library does not subscribe to that journal, or our holdings do not include the year of publication you need, consider submitting an Interlibrary Loan request. We'll get the article for you, at no cost, but you need to allow one week for delivery.

Top Journals at KPU

Here are just some of the important journals related to society and horticulture that the library subscribes to. As a starting point to your research, browse current issues for topic ideas or set up a table of contents alert to be notified when new issues arrive.

Beyond the Library

  • Once you've thoroughly searched the library's collections, and you are looking for more hard-to-find literature, use Google Scholar. If you are off campus, check the settings in Google Scholar. Look for Library Links, and add Kwantlen Polytechnic University Library to the search box.This setting will provide links to those search results the Library has access to.
  • Looking for conference proceedings? try a Google Scholar search, using your topic as keywords, and either "conference proceedings", symposium, congress, etc.
  • Try Advanced Search features in Google such as limiting to a specific domain (.org, .edu, .gov), website (, or file type (PDF).


The Literature Review

You may be asked to prepare a literature review as an assignment, but more likely you are going to be expected to include a lit review as part of the introduction to your research paper. Properly done, a literature review is more than an annotated bibliography or summary of research articles. Your lit review should inform your readers of significant past research in your specialized topic, but also highlight critical issues, areas where research is lacking, or novel applications that your research is going to explore.

As an example of a well-written literature review, take a look at the Introduction of this article  from the journal Urban Ecosystems. You'll need to open up the full text of the article in order to read the introduction (NOT just the abstract). Either download the pdf and locate the introduction on pages 114-115, or view online.

For some helpful tips on how to get started doing a literature review, see the University of Toronto Library's The Literature Review: A Few Tips on Conducting it.

Citing and Managing your Research

For details on how to use APA citation style, see the Library's APA guide.

Information on installing and using Zotero can be found at