BH&G Plant Name Style

Common names

Most stories don’t need to include a botanical name. Just use the common name and add the cultivar if we have it.

  • ‘Autumn Joy’ sedum
  • ‘Little Spire’ Russian sage

Some plants have the same name for common and botanical uses; all these should be lc Roman.

  • aloe
  • heuchera
  • coleus
  • lisianthus
  • hosta

Botanical names

When needed in a story about plantings or a more technical story, we can give both botanical and common names. This will be needed only when mentioning a special, unusual plant.

  • Holywood (Guaiacum santum)
  • Christmas heliconia (Heliconia angusta)

The genus and species names may be followed by:

Subspecies: a naturally occurring, distinct variant of a species, indicated by subsp. in roman type. This is a higher division than “variety.”

  • Prunus lusitanica subsp. azorica

Varieties and forms: minor subdivisions of a species, differing slightly in their botanical structure. Indicated by var. and f. in roman type.

  • The pink variety of the Pacific dogwood is Cornus florida var. rubra.

Hybrids (or crosses): naturally or artificially produced offspring of genetically distinct parent plants. Use a Dimension X to indicate hybrids.

  • Viola x wittrockiana

Cultivars: selected or artificially raised, distinct variants of species, subspecies, varieties, forms, and hybrids. Cultivars will not come true from seed, so are usually propagated asexually by cloning. Denoted by single quotes, capped, no ital. If punctuation follows the cultivar name, the punctuation is placed outside the single quotation mark:

  • Perovskia atriplicifolia ‘Little Spire’
  • Echinops bannaticus ‘Albus’

Also, it is possible to have a cultivar of a variety:

  • Berberis thunbergia var. atropurpurea ‘Chenault’

Mix, Series, Strain: Multiples of a single cultivar. Put in single quotes as we do cultivars.

Trademarked plants

Put in single quotes as we do cultivars.

  • ‘Black Nebula’ carrots Stay dark even after cooking. ‘Silver Queen’ okra An heirloom variety from long ago.
  • With so many varieties of tomatoes to choose from, it’s hard to pick one. For hybrid varieties, grow ‘Better Boy’, ‘Big Beef’, ‘Pink Girl’, and ‘Celebrity’.

Credits: Photographers

To credit a company, say “Photo courtesy of”

Photographer credits: style.

Adam Albright
Tatjana Alvegård/Alvegaard
Craig Anderson
Thomas Arledge
Povy Kendal Atchison
King Au
Quentin Bacon
Robert Bailey
Marty Baldwin (on staff)
Andre Baranowski (removed accent from Andre 2/4/16)
Pamela Barkentin Blackburn
Edmund Barr
Gordon Beall
Matthew Benson
John Bessler
Laurie Black
Jeff Blanton
Christiaan Blok
Ernest Braun
Fran Brennan
David W. Brown
Graham Brown
Robert Brown
Steve Budman
Troy Campbell
Rob Cardillo
David Cavagnaro
Ross Chapple
Langdon Clay
Karla Conrad
Kim Cornelison
Grey Crawford
Stephen Cridland
Adam Crocker
J. Curtis
Cheryl Dalton
deGennaro Associates
Laurie Dickson
Mike Dieter
Erica George Dines
Jason Donnelly (on staff)
Carson Downing (on staff) (added 12/13/16)
Andrew Drake
Colleen Duffley
Craig Dugan, Hedrich-Blessing
Rowland Egerton
Patrick Farrell: credit should be Thuss + Farrell
Clint Farlinger
Richard Felber
Tim Fields
Emily J. Followill
John Reed Forsman
D. Randolph Foulds
Jacob Fox (on staff)
Kathryn Gamble
Michael Garland
Bill Geddes
Getty: Getty bought iStock. So all Getty and/or iStock images need to say: Getty Images. e.g., Nottomanv1/iStock by Getty Images (updated 1/29/18)
Joshua Savage Gibson
Susan Gilmore
Laurey Glenn (no middle initial W. per Holly)
Tria Giovan
Ed Gohlich
Susan Goldman
Leo Gong
Jay Graham
John Granen
Robert Grant
Karlis Grants
Sam Gray
Bob Greenspan
Jamie Hadley
Steve Hall, Hedrich-Blessing
Linda Hanselman
Chris Hansen
Bob Harr, Hedrich-Blessing
Brian Harrison
Chipper Hatter
Pat Haverfield
Jim Hedrich, Hedrich-Blessing
Craig Dugan, Hedrich-Blessing
Steve Hall, Hedrich-Blessing
Bob Harr, Hedrich-Blessing
Jim Hedrich, Hedrich-Blessing
Scott McDonald, Hedrich-Blessing
Nick Merrick, Hedrich-Blessing
Jon Miller, Hedrich-Blessing
Bob Shimer, Hedrich-Blessing

Chip Henderson
Aimee Herring
Christopher Hirsheimer
Allan Holm
Bill Holt
Jerry Honeywell
Hopkins Associates (credit for Bill Hopkins)
Mike Howes
Roy Inman
Brent Isenberger
iStock by Getty Images (see Getty above)
Jon Jensen
Michael Jensen
Erik Johnson
Gene Johnson
Stephen Kent Johnson (added 8/24/16)
Jenifer Jordan
Dency Kane
John Kane
Lynn Karlin
Keller & Keller
Terri Ketcham
Muffy Kibbey
Susan Kinast
Bert Klassen
Caroline Kopp
Jim Krantz
Pete Krumhardt
David A. Land/Pat Bates & Associates (or David A. Land/Pat Bates)
Details: For main edit stories, it should read David A. Land in byline and Pat Bates & Associates in the gutter. For FOB stories, with the credit in the gutter, use David A. Land/Pat Bates. (updated 4/27/16 and 7/11/16)
Bob Lenz
Frances Litman
Chris A. Little
Scott Little
Mark Lohman
Hal Lott
Janet Loughrey
Sherry Lubic
David Lund
Andy Lyons
Allen Maertz
Charles Mann
Julie Maris/Semel
Dave Marlow
Kevin Marple
Barbara Elliott Martin
Ned Matura
Bob Mauer
Deborah Mazzoleni
David McDonald
Scott McDonald, Hedrich-Blessing
Jeff McNamara
Tom McWilliam
Michael Melman
Rob Melnychuk
Karen Melvin
Nick Merrick, Hedrich-Blessing
Janet Mesic-Mackie
Jon Miller, Hedrich-Blessing
Matthew Millman
William Minarich
Tommy Miyasaki
Blaine Moats (on staff)
Ira Montgomery
Mike Moreland
Gordon Morioka
Tim Murphy
Bill Nellans
Alise O’Brien
Michael Partenio
Brie Passano (on staff starting 2/5/18)
Rick Patrick
Jerry Pavia
Rett Peek
Dan Piassick
M. C. Pindar
Gene Pollux
Diane Pratt
Greg Premru
David Prince
Howard Lee Puckett
Emily Minton Redfield (no hyphen confirmed 1/5/18)
Eric Roth
Kate Roth
Susan Roth
Jeffrey A. Rycus
Cameron Sadeghpour
Eric Salmon
James Salomon
Mark Samu
Kathy Sanders
Jeff Sarpa
Greg Scheidemann
Dean Schoeppner
Julie Maris/Semel
Richard Sexton
Bob Shimer, Hedrich-Blessing
Casey Sills
Brad Simmons
Beth Singer
Michael Skott
Kevin Smith
Lark Smothermon
David Speer
Julie Sprott
William Stites
Marilyn Stouffer
Werner Straube
Perry Struse
Peter Symcox
Rick Taylor
Mark Thomas
Thuss + Farrell (credit for Patrick Farrell)
Andreas Trauttmansdorff
Mark Turner
Joan VanderSchuit
Thomas Veneklasen
Peter Vitale
Dominique Vorillon
Roger Wade
Jessie Walker
Peter Walters
Judith Watts
Wendell Webber
Virginia R. Weiler
Michael Weschler
Deborah Whitlaw-Llewellyn
Brian Whitney
Jay Wilde
Brie Williams
David Wilson
Greg Wilson
John Yanyshyn
James Yochum


Copy editors
Field editors
Food stylists


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World Wide Web

Website addresses

Ideally, website addresses should be kept entirely on one line. In practice, this is not always possible. If it is necessary to break a website address, do so before a form of punctuation, such as a hyphen or period, or after a slash (/). Do not add a hyphen at the end of the line. This should help readers avoid misreading the address.

In body copy, captions, and other running text, drop the “http://” or “www.” before a website address unless the site will not load without it. Put the address in a typeface opposite that of accompanying text (for instance, italic type within roman copy) so the reader comprehends it at a glance. If the website address is in parentheses, put the parens in the same typeface as the address.
For instructions, visit the Carpet and Rug Institute’s website at
Check out
EBay ( is a great source for hard-to-find items.
The Stencil Artisans League shares information about techniques at
Illustrations lead browsers through suggestions at

In display type (cover blurbs, folios, heds, etc.), opposite typeface is not necessary.

Capitalization in website addresses

Treat Meredith websites as brand names by capitalizing before an extension (such as .com or .net) as appropriate. In body copy, captions, and other running text, they should also be set off in an opposite typeface.

Non-Meredith websites should be all lowercase through the extension.

Web address information of Meredith websites following an extension (separated by a slash) is not case-sensitive; for readability, cap each word, including articles and prepositions, after the slash.

Web address information of non-Meredith websites following an extension (separated by a slash) may be case-sensitive and should be lowercase/capped as indicated by the owner of the site.

In display type and other graphic treatments, key letters of Meredith website names can be emphasized with a type treatment other than caps—weight, size, or color, for instance.

Sentence capitalization rules always apply: The first letter of a sentence is always capitalized, whether it’s the t in the, the m in Meredith, or the e in eBay.

Capitalize names of sections within a website.
Click on the Bath Estimator to price flooring and cabinets.
You can save your work using the Projects Folder feature.

For capitalization, punctuation, and type treatment of blog names and podcast names, see Titles of Works.


In redirects in home design, garden, and food titles, avoid punctuation at the end of a URL. (added 9.17.14)
incorrect: For all downloads, go to
correct: Go to for all downloads.


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Use versus With

Use use when you need the object to complete a task. Use with when you are doing something along with the person/thing.
Correct: Use a pencil to trace …/Using a pencil, trace …
Incorrect: With a pencil trace …
Correct: I went to the library with the copy editors.

Trademarks: Meredith (including partner pubs)

On Meredith titles with registered trademarks, include ® on covers, spines, mastheads, title pages, and postal ID statements. Include ™ on all Meredith titles that do not have registered trademarks. In display type, where the ® or ™ is placed at the end of the title is at the discretion of the designer. (updated 11/27/18)
100 Decorating Ideas Under $100®
100 Ideas® (title of magazine)™
100 Weekend Decorating Ideas®
American Patchwork & Quilting®
Beautiful Living Through Faith®
Best of Country Gardens®
Better Homes & Gardens®
(magazine) <<Do not use a ® in BH&G running text. updated 3/11/19>>
Better Homes & Gardens® (brand in general; when it’s a specific name, see those that follow or check with the legal department)
Better Homes & Gardens Collection® (no italic)
Better Homes & Gardens Creative Collection® (no italic)
Better Homes & Gardens Creative Collection® Publications (no italic)
Better Homes & Gardens® Furniture Collection (no italic)
Better Homes & Gardens® Home Decor Fabrics (no italic)
Better Homes & Gardens Special Interest Publications® (no italic)
Better Homes & Gardens Test Garden® (no italic)
Better Homes & Gardens® Test Kitchen—use second ® with logo, next to bottom right corner of red plaid
BH&G® (no italic)
BH&G® Creative Collection® (no italic)
BH&G® Creative Collection® Publications
BH&G® Special Interest Publications (on a cover in the box near the UPC)
BH&G Online® (no italic)® (no italic)
BH&G Specials™ (no italic)
Big Dreams. Real Budgets.®
Christmas Ideas®
Cook This Not That®
Country French®

Country French Decorating®
Country Gardens®
Country Home®
Creative Collection® (no italic)
Diabetes What to Eat®
Diabetic Living®
Do It Yourself Ideas for Your Home & Garden® (but Do It Yourself™)
Dream Gardens Across America®
Easy Garden Guide®
EAT Easy Family Food®
Eat This Not That®
Eat This, Not That!®

Forks Over Knives®
Garden, Deck & Landscape®
Garden Doctor. Advice from the Experts.®
Garden Ideas & Outdoor Living®
Halloween Tricks & Treats®
Heart-Healthy Living®
Holiday Baking®
Holiday Cooking®
Holiday Crafts®
Hungry Girl®
Kitchen + Bath Ideas®
Kitchen and Bath Ideas® Products Guide™
Living the Country Life®
Living with Quilts
Meals by the Plate®
Meredith® (no italic)
MeredithSpecials® (one word, no italic)
Mixing Bowl® (website); Mixing Bowl™ (magazine)
Quilt Pink® (no italic) program; Quilt Pink™ (ital) magazine
Quilt Sampler®
Renovation Style®
Scrapbooks etc.®
Scrapbooks Etc. Inspirations®
Simply Perfect®
(title of magazine)™
Window & Wall Ideas®
Zero Belly®

To make these symbols in Word and InDesign:
™ option-2
® option-r


Common trademarks
Meredith trademarks

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Trademarks: Common

In general, avoid using brand names. Instead, choose a more detailed but generic description. (Product stories are an obvious exception.)
incorrect: The IKEA sofa creates a lively focal point.
correct: A bright, contemporary sofa creates a lively focal point.

Be aware that some names that have made their way into the vernacular are actually trademarked brand names that usually should be avoided. Con-Tact paper, Crock-Pot, Jacuzzi, Lycra, Plexiglas, Sheetrock, Spackle, Styrofoam, Thermos, and Velcro are just a few. If you do use a trademarked name, be sure you’re using it correctly. It’s just as bad to call a generic product “Plexiglas” as it is to call the name brand “plexiglass.” Also, use trademark symbols (™ and ®) only with Meredith products.

Following is a list of common trademarks with the appropriate generic terminology. For a more complete list, search the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office database.

Bel Paese
Bundt pan
Chalk Paint
Corning Ware
Crescent wrench
Cyclone fence
Dry Ice
Feather Rock
Flex-arm lamp
Hershey’s Kisses
Hot Tray
Instant Pot
Kiddie Kar
Kitty Litter
Liquid Nails
Louver drapery
Masa Harina
Molly bolt
Naval Jelly
Plastic Wood
Saran Wrap
Shabby Chic
Stitch Witchery
Tabasco sauce
Weed Eater
Weight Watchers
Yellow Pages

embossed decorative wall covering
plastic bags
adhesive bandages
fluted cake/tube pan
paint with a matte, almost chalky, finish
self-sticking covering
cookware, ovenware
adjustable-end wrench
slow cooker
food processor
chain-link fence
polyester fiber/fiberfill
chocolate-nut pie
lightweight or porous rock
fiberglass/glass fibers
use for Fiesta products made by Homer Laughlin China Co.
phyllo/pastry dough
swing-arm lamp
plastic laminate
pneumatically applied concrete
olefin fiber
Kisses milk chocolates (see Word List)
sofa bed
electric warming tray
multifunction electric pressure cooker
whirlpool bath
self-venting range
toy car
cat box filler
soft-drink mix
coin laundry/self-service laundry
plastic construction toys
decorative wall coverings
building materials adhesive
vertical blinds
acrylic resin/acrylic plastic
spandex fiber
liquid tear gas
tortilla flour
expansion bolt/hollow wall anchor
clear polyester film
petroleum jelly
floral foam (updated 2/6/17)
perforated board/pegboard
fusible webbing
table tennis
wood filler
modeling clay
acrylic plastic/plexiglass
synthetic fiber
fusible webbing
frozen dessert/pop stick
fabric dye
heat-resistant glassware
cotton swabs
real estate agent (unless member)
blue cheese
plastic film
protective spray coating
timeworn elegance/timeworn chic
concrete form tubes
surfacing compound
sponge ware
high-brimmed hat
fusible webbing
hot pepper sauce
fluorocarbon resins/nonstick coating
insulated glass
thermal container
construction toy
imitation suede
petroleum jelly
touch fastener/hook-and-loop tape
locking plier-wrench
portable radio/stereo and headphones
grass and weed trimmer
diet foods
decorative wood strips
crafts knife
no longer a trademark, but often capitalized
resealable plastic storage bags, ziplock plastic bags


Common trademarks
Meredith trademarks

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1. Use ™ or ® on Meredith trademarked names but no others. (The ™ notation means we are seeking or plan to seek trademark protection for that title. The ® notation means trademark protection has been granted.)

2. Use generic terms instead of trademarked names when possible.

3. Use trademarked names
• for products whose generic names are not easily interpreted or sufficiently informative.
• when needed for the reader’s understanding of what the product is, what it does, or how it’s used.
• for products that are unique (no other product can be substituted to achieve the same result).
Super Bowl is a good example of a unique product that is trademarked (by the National Football League, which vigorously defends its mark). Editorial use of Super Bowl is OK; commercial use of Super Bowl is not OK. (added 11/20/14)
correct: “At your Super Bowl party, enjoy mango mousse and play Advertising Bingo. Download our bingo PDF here.”
incorrect: “At your Super Bowl party, enjoy mango mousse and play Super Bowl Bingo. Download our bingo PDF here.”

We could get into trouble if our PDF was labeled Super Bowl Bingo because the bingo PDF is a product, which makes it a commerical use, not an editorial mention. A better option would be to label our PDF Big Game Bingo, Football Bingo, or Advertising Bingo instead.

4. When using trademarked names, capitalize them. Do not use trademarked names in boldface, italics, or all caps (unless they appear in a copy block of such).

5. If possible, include the generic term with the trademarked name on first use. Call the product by its generic term in the rest of the article.

6. Italicize Better Homes & Gardens when referring to the magazine but not when referring to the brand.

Sources for information on trademarks and corresponding generic terms:
1. Meredith Corporation Trademark Manual and Legal Department—for Meredith Corporation trademarks.
2. Webster’s Third New International Dictionary (unabridged)—for correct spelling of long-standing trademarks and descriptions of products they represent.
3. U.S. Patent and Trademark Office database—for recent trademarks, their correct spellings, and their accurate generic terms.


Common trademarks
Meredith trademarks

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Titles of Works

(updated 1/22/19)

Use italics (or opposite typeface) to identify whole works:
• blogs
• books
• CD-ROM titles (not software programs)
• collections of poems and long poems
• magazines
• movies
• museum and art exhibits
• musical compositions (long)
• newsletters
• newspapers
• plays
Her favorite play is She Stoops to Conquer.
• podcasts
• quilt names
• records and tapes
• ships
• TV shows
• videotapes
• works of art

Use quotation marks to identify parts of works:
• articles
• brochures
• episodes of blogs, podcasts, and TV shows
• essays
• magazine stories
• pamphlets
• parts of books, chapters
• poems (short)
• sidebars
• songs
• speech titles

Capitalize, but do not italicize or put in quotes, the names of board games, catalogs, columns, computer/video games, fabric collections, software, video series, wallpaper books, and YouTube videos.
The designer chose wall coverings from the Raymond Waites Manor collection.
Order from the Pottery Barn or Crate and Barrel catalog.
Laura used bold prints from the Gardenia collection by Henry Glass & Co.
Joanna and Camille are regular designers for Scrap Lab.

See also Capitalization: Websites and Capitalization: Headlines.



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Symbols are not used in text materials.
This will be several dollars cheaper.
Do you have 35 cents?
The interest rate is 12 percent.
It rests at a 45-degree angle.

Quilting how-to content

Product numbers and paintbrush sizes: Use the # symbol.
The hutch (#B4617) is only available online.
Use a #2 liner brush to finish the treatment.

Specific dollar amounts.
The cost is $20.

Temperatures: Use the degree symbol (option-shift-8) and the abbreviation for Fahrenheit (with no space between). For temperatures below 0°F, use a minus sign (hyphen), not an en dash.
The plant is hardy to at least 10°F.
The plant is hardy to at least -5°F.

Symbols are acceptable for tables, charts, and notations on drawings, but use them consistently throughout.
” (inch, inches)
‘ (foot, feet)
° (degree, degrees)
% (percent)
$ (dollar, dollars)
¢ (cent, cents—except with decimals)

Use Dimension X in all measurements. (Select text, then navigate to Window/Automation/Scripts and select “Convert Characters.” If this script is not installed on your computer, see a staff copy editor.)
Use a 2×4 for the project.

Use symbols, such as ampersands, in company names that use them. Leave space around an ampersand separating words, but not around one separating initials.
It’s manufactured by Smith & Co.
It’s manufactured by B&R Designs.

Abbreviate number (No.) in text material when it precedes a figure.
Use a skein of No. 6 yarn for the project. (not #6)



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Suffix -ed

Use -ed in a compound adjective when you’re describing modification to an existing object:
walnut-stained cabinets
a granite-topped buffet
The cabinets and the buffet were there before the stain was applied or the granite was placed.

When you name an integral quality, however, don’t use -ed:
nine-pane windows
a barrel-vault ceiling
There was no window until the panes came together. The ceiling was built as a barrel vault; it wasn’t built flat and then vaulted.

Note that this rule applies to compound modifiers. A single word in a similar construction often requires the -ed:
paned windows
a vaulted ceiling

Although -ed is dropped in many adjectives according to BHG style, several decorating words retain the -ed in order to maintain clarity. For example: striped, checked, and dotted. However, if used as a noun to describe a fabric or wallcovering, use stripe.
The curtains are available in a stripe or a check.

*No -ed (added 5.5.14)


Problem rules and words
Easily confused words
Suffix -ed

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