Thank you all for your helpful ideas. I am about to order some plants with your input in mind, but I wanted to clarify a couple of things before I order wrong.
I am interested in giving cymbidiums and zygos a try. I have only found a few places that seem to carry them, the specialized places are too complex for me to choose and their websites aren't very friendly. So I am about to order from a place with a small selection, but a 20% off sale! I have chosen a couple different cyms and a zygo that are said to flower in the winter. The cyms are said to be warmth tolerant, which I hope is OK in my non-warm conditions. Also, I want blooming sized plants, and although different pot sizes are offered, they don't say which ones are ready to flower.
But my main question is: I am understanding that these need outside temps to set buds for the upcoming season. I suppose they will arrive straight out of some greenhouse; can I put them directly outside when I get them? We only have a month or so until frost--is that enough time to meet their needs to bud before they have to come back inside?
I like to try new orchids, but only if I have a reasonable chance for success!