vegetation handling

hi all,
i’m considering Blender as an alternative to LW and 3dsMax, one of the thing i’m more concerned about is vegetation handling.
I see this question has been debated in the past but i wonder if something has changed lately.
I need to handle complex echosystems made of many hi-poly items, and in my attempts Blender’s particle system crawls when i spread 200K hi-poly grass patches, even if they are seen as Bounding Box. Linking Vmaps to scale and density is nice, but painting Vmaps with high numbers seems to be slower than other apps. Again, it seems no preset system allows to save and reuse echosystems, like in Forest Pack.
Since a lot of archviz artists are looking at blender recently, and since this is one of the key-issues one makes a choice upon, i wonder if something is moving in this area to have a more advanced system for this tasks.

Thanks in advance,