amino acids cannabis

Amino Acids — Here’s What They Do For Cannabis Plants

Amino acids are crucial for humans, but what about cannabis plants? Take a glimpse into the world of protein building for plants, and see how you can support plant development and yield with amino acids.


Nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium are the three main pillars of nutrient solutions and fertilisers, but there are countless other nutrients that your cannabis plants need in order to produce the best possible harvest. Amino acids are one of them. In this article, we’ll show you how amino acids affect cannabis plants and help them produce bigger, more resinous buds.


You may have noticed that amino acids get a lot of attention from bodybuilders and other athletes. That’s because they play a key role in the synthesis of protein, which, as you probably know, is super important for sports recovery and muscle growth. Amino acids are the building blocks of protein, and the foundation of both plant and animal life.

But what do amino acids do for cannabis?


Just like proteins are important for the human body, they are equally important for the growth and development of plants.

For example, proteins help plants by…

• Supporting their cellular strength
• Facilitating the growth of intracellular plant structures
• Promoting energy generation
• Stimulating metabolic processes
• Facilitating the transportation of nutrients

So, where do plants get these vital proteins from? Well, unlike humans, plants can’t source proteins or amino acids from other organisms. Instead, they need to create their own amino acids, and then use these to build protein. That’s why gardeners, much like athletes, go wild for amino acid supplements.

Amino acids help plants by…

• Increasing their production of chlorophyll, which ultimately improves their ability to photosynthesise
• Serving as an easily absorbable form of nitrogen
• Stimulating the synthesis of key vitamins
• Improving their resistance to pests and diseases
• Boosting the strength of their cells

Amino acids also serve as the precursors to auxins, a group of plant hormones produced in the tips of stems. Auxins play a key role in the development of branches, flower and root development, and even help regulate your plant’s photoperiod response.

Some amino acids, like cysteine, also work together with antioxidants like glutathione to help cannabis plants deal with oxidative stress, which can be caused by high-intensity lighting, some nutrient solutions, and high levels of CO₂.

Unlike humans, plants can synthesise all the amino acids they need to survive and develop properly. Unfortunately, however, amino acid synthesis is a really high-energy process, and plants may struggle to produce enough amino acids when exposed to stress.


Any kind of stress can affect a plant’s ability to produce enough amino acids.

• Drought
• Temperature extremes
• Poor soil health
• Pests
• Diseases
• Poor lighting
• Lack of space
• Poor root health


If you really want to push your plants to their extreme in terms of floral growth and resin production, you should look into amino acid fertilisers. By making amino acids readily available to your plants, they’ll be able to use crucial energy to grow and bloom, rather than focusing on synthesising amino acids themselves.


Plants can absorb amino acids via their roots and leaves. They can also benefit from amino acids during both their vegetative and flowering phases.

The fastest way for plants to absorb amino acids is via their leaves. In fact, the foliar application of amino acids is believed to improve the transportation of nutrients, increase transpiration, and boost photosynthesis.

Hence, we generally recommend feeding your plants with foliar amino acid fertilisers. When doing so, however, carefully measure the amount of fertiliser you use, as—like with any nutrient—overfeeding can damage your plants.


Amino acids differ depending on their structure, and every amino acid (except glycine) can be produced either in D- or L-form. Without going into too much detail, the difference between D- and L-form amino acids is basically the way their atoms are structured.

While fertilisers are available with both D- and L-form amino acids (also known as L-enantiomer amino acids), we highly recommend using the latter, as they are much easier for your plant to absorb.

When buying amino acid fertilisers, make sure to buy products that contain all 20 amino acids in their L-enantiomer form, including:

Amino acids are the foundation of plant and animal life. Click here to learn all there is to know about the benefits of amino acids for cannabis.


Let me start with an initial explanation of what amino acids are.

Amino acids are organic molecules that are made up of carbon (C), hydrogen (H), oxygen (O) and nitrogen (N) , [methionine and cystine also contain sulfur (S)].

20 amino acids have been identified as protein builders and more than 250 non-protein amino acids have also been found in plants with physiological, metabolic and functional functions , making amino acids essential for the proper development of plants.

Amino acids have 2 configurations : the first L, left-handed (also called free amino acids), in which the position of the amino group (NH2, blue color) is to the left of the acidic carboxyl group (COOH, red color), as The lower image shows L-Alanine and the second D, right-handed , in which the position of the amino group (NH2, blue color) is to the right of the acidic carboxyl group (COOH, red color), as seen in the lower image D-Alanina.

Plants need to use a lot of energy to make proteins , which are made up of amino acids. In cases of stress or low growth, the applications of amino acids will increase plant metabolism , that is, plants will use the energy they obtain from photosynthesis in their growth, since we are providing them with the amino acids they need to form proteins and they do not have to manufacture them, optimizing and taking advantage of this energy in their growth.

In this case, we are only concerned with amino acids with an L configuration , which are the only ones that plants are capable of absorbing and assimilating.

In the market you can find various products with amino acids of different origins: animal, synthetic or vegetable. Most commercial products with amino acids contain amino acids of synthetic or animal origin, as these are the most economical for fertilizer manufacturers. However, the best amino acids to apply in plants are undoubtedly those of plant origin . The amino acids of plant origin come from the extraction of plants rich in proteins, such as soybeans, and which are extracted through hydrolysis processes or through natural fermentation processes . Since they are amino acids that come from plants, they are able to recognize them better and faster since they have the same origin and in this way they are absorbed and assimilated more efficiently .

To correctly choose a product with adequate amino acids and of good quality for our plants,

we have to look at the labeling and its description . For this, we will look in the labeling that the description of the amino acids comes as ” Free Amino Acids ” and we must avoid products that declare only total amino acids, because we CANNOT know if there are free amino acids that belong to the L configuration that are assimilable by plants .

In summary, we have to look at 2 fundamental things when purchasing a product with amino acids on the market: 1- that the manufacturer indicates on the label that the amino acids are in free form (L) and 2- that they are 100% plant-based . On the other hand, the content is also important, because with a greater richness of amino acids we can reduce the application dose compared to products that are less concentrated.

It should be noted that most of the amino acids that come from the extraction of soybeans are mostly from crops of genetically modified varieties (Genetically Modified Organisms, GMOs). These GMO soybean varieties cultivated for subsequent extraction of their amino acids are plants whose genetic material has been transformed through genetic engineering techniques (in plant genetics laboratories), by inserting genes from other species such as bacteria. An example of a variety of transgenic soybeans is “soybean 40-3-2” , to which a gene for resistance to glyphosate (herbicide) that comes from a bacterium of the genus ” Agrobacterium “, which are bacteria that normally they are found in soils .

In the YUKHA range of products, the amino acids they contain are 100% vegetable in origin , and always under their L configuration (free and assimilable) , which are what plants are really capable of assimilating. Furthermore, our amino acids are obtained from plants that have not been genetically modified, as they come from local ancestral crops and are obtained using traditional fermentation techniques from Indian Ayurveda .

Using the YUKHA range of products is an absolute guarantee NOT to use products that come from Genetically Modified Organisms ( GMOs ) .

Translated from the original text in Spanish by Yukha

Amino acids are organic molecules composed of carbon (C), hydrogen (H), oxygen (O), and nitrogen (N), methionine and cystine also contain sulfur. ]]>