Granted we are in North Florida, what we experience as "winter" pales in comparison to many out there. Nevertheless, this was my first experience in "overwintering" with respect to the awesome information provided on this site. I have been gardening for nearly 40 years, and with peppers, sometimes it was fantastic, and sometimes, downright ugly. Over the past two years, we just kept hitting a wall with pepper plants. They would come home fine from the store, look great for a week or so, then either get pest infestations, nematodes in the soil, or drown from all the rain (and yes, over-watering), and become "sticks in a pot". In 2017, after reading through many of the tutorials and glogs on this site, it dawned on me that I was approaching this all wrong. I bought 2 plants from the local HD, brought them home, and embarked on the quest in a different manner. Over-watering has seemed to be the biggest challenge here, and especially if you get torrential rains when you don't need them. I am container-growing these, for reference. When I started, I bought a Red Bhut Jolokia and a Habanero the same day. I placed them both in individual, dual-bucket systems, to control the watering, and protect them from native soil issues (nematodes). The Habanero continued to have issues, leaf drop, etc., while the Red Bhut thrived. I bailed on the dual bucket approach with the Habanero mid summer, and went to a single pot approach with a gravel bottom. Realized I have to bottom water this one really sparingly. Leave it out in the rain, and it poops out again. Kept the Red Bhut in a pot with a bottom-watering basin to control things, and it went great all year. Now, these are both camped out in the garage while pouring rain and or freezing.
The Red Bhut is cut back and new growth is appearing and growing well just within the 3 days between pics. The Habanero is also showing new growth, but has been very sensitive to watering. I did not chop off any root material from the Red Bhut, fearing I will screw up a good thing. It's not root bound, but I am wondering if I should just let it go through this next season as is? Going to let the Habanero catch up on it's own.