Some key caveats:
They conclude that polycultures are intriguing but definitely require more (agronomically realistic) research.
- While diverse plant mixtures have been associated with many benefits, high biomass yield (i.e. what farmers get paid for) is usually not one of them.
- It's very difficult to maintain complex plant mixtures - usually a single species will come to dominate.
- Our crop monocultures represent those crops that are best adapted to a given region.
- Establishing, maintaing and harvesting polycultures will require significant effort, risk, investments and training for farmers.