Please show me the most simple, elegant code for this:

enter image description here

How to do it in other words.

  • You could have a look at TikZ and its possibilities to draw trees: texample.net/tikz/examples/feature/trees (I admit I never used them myself yet, so I can not quickly create an example) May 25, 2011 at 17:12
  • 1
    ...or use the Qtree package (ling.upenn.edu/advice/latex/qtree) as recommended here: tex.stackexchange.com/questions/5447/… (however the lines are straight and not horizontal/vertical as in your sketch) May 25, 2011 at 17:19
  • Any suggestions on how to add the labels on the left hand side (Class, Family, ...)? Also I would like the style of connectors as shown above. If anyone's still game, could they please show me the code, as I am still learning.
    – ptrcao
    May 25, 2011 at 17:44

2 Answers 2


You can do this sort of tree easily with the tikz-qtree package:

In the code below, the labels are created using a tree with branches that are not actually drawn (using a style blank which sets [draw=none]). This ensures that they line up with the levels of the main tree. By putting two trees as nodes in a matrix we achieve a reasonable separation between the labels and the main tree.

\tikzset{edge from parent/.style=
{draw, edge from parent path={(\tikzparentnode.south)
-- +(0,-8pt)
-| (\tikzchildnode)}},
    [.Class  \edge[blank]; 
    [.Order  \edge[blank];
    [.Family \edge[blank]; 
    [.Genus ]]]]};
        [.Alteromonadaceae  {Glaciecola}  Alteromonas Agarivorans ] ]
    [.Vibrionales [.Vibrionacae Vibrio ]]]};\\


output of code

  • Thanks. Is there any way to create a bit more distance between the labels on the left hand side (Class, Order, ...) and the graph?
    – ptrcao
    May 26, 2011 at 1:08
  • 2
    @ptrcao I've modified the example to make two trees in a matrix of nodes instead of one tree. This gives more space between the labels, since the labels are no longer connected to the main tree.
    – Alan Munn
    May 26, 2011 at 2:24

run with xelatex




enter image description here

  • Any way to offset the Alteromonas branch slightly? I'm not sure if it's necessary but I see it often being done in biology and I'm tempted to think it's deliberate, to avoid giving that branch the appearance of receiving special treatment or greater relational weight, relative to the others...
    – ptrcao
    May 26, 2011 at 0:46
  • 1
    all can be set locally by thistreesep or thislevelsep
    – user2478
    May 26, 2011 at 6:37
  • @Herbert I'm sorry for being a nuisance, can you please show explicitly? I'm really new at this! :|
    – ptrcao
    May 26, 2011 at 8:35
  • 1
    @ptrcao: ah that's simple, see edited answer
    – user2478
    May 26, 2011 at 9:08
  • 1
    @ptrcao: insert -shell-escape after the %O and load package autp-pst-pdf ($pdflatex=q/pdflatex -synctex=1 %O -shell-escape %S/). You have to insert a new entry (+) move it up and then delete the old one. It makes sense that you have installed Perl (actibestate.com/perl) then the very useful program pdfcrop can be used.
    – user2478
    May 26, 2011 at 12:34

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .