Then I was asked if there would be a conflict having both types of bees in our yard. According to a publication from the Extension service at Washington State University, the answer is an emphatic "no!" Obviously if you don't have many flowers at all, there might not be enough food for all the bees. But having a bountiful yard (which we are working towards) and a regular water supply (more on that below) should be enough for both sets of pollinators.
After attending a few lectures & talking with other beekeepers, we've discovered that the months of August-November present a problem because there aren't as many flowers, so not enough food for honeybees (there are many schools of thought on what to feed them instead, but honey is best). I've been using the Wildflower.org Native Plant Database to find appropriate flowers to fill in this gap. After selecting Virginia for my state and part-shade for the area, it's also possible to select the months you want the plant to flower in! (You can even
In terms of water for bees, that is a real problem in our area. We have 3 bowls which we keep filled for the squirrels & birds. But mosquitoes are such a problem that we try to empty them out (or let them go dry each week) so there's not a regular supply of standing water, which mosquitoes love. According to this webpage, if the top of the water is moving, mosquitoes won't lay eggs (a reason to have a drip system). Also, bees will drown if there's nothing floating in the water, so corks & sticks are recommended! And apparently they don't like nice, clean water--they like it a bit dirty. So, we have to work on getting more corks and figuring out a way to ensure water year-round for them.