Winter squash is a fantastic plant to have in the garden if you are looking to store food for the winter. Requiring almost nothing from you as a storage crop, I keep my winter squash in my back porch where it is only slightly cooler than the rest of the house.
Squash are full sun, heavy feeders and require a long growing season, but here in Minnesota Zone 4 you can grow almost any variety.
Squash need plenty of space to sprawl out and do best planted this way so they can root down in multiple places. However, I have had very good luck growing smaller varieties up sturdy trellising. You will need to protect the base of the stem from vine borers if using this method. Simple wrap the base of the stem when planting with foil, thick newspaper, toilet paper rolls, paper cups etc. Here’s a video giving you some different info on how to prevent them.
Powdery Mildew can be a problem here in our climate. Giving your plants enough room for air to move around helps dramatically. I have sprayed my plants down with slightly diluted milk to help kill off the spores but this can be time consuming. I don’t really bother as it doesn’t typically effect them until later in the season. If you have powdery mildew on any plants, make sure you remove those plants full from the garden at the end of the season.
For best production, make sure you have some flowers to help attract pollinators to your garden!