Help the development of the site, sharing the article with friends!

A pepper plant does not survive the winter outdoors in local areas. In most cases, the plants end up on the compost after the last harvest. They can easily be made fit for overwintering and will reward you with a continuously growing crop yield. All you need is the plant expert's advice.


In principle, all types and varieties of peppers are suitable for overwintering. This is not only worthwhile in order to save yourself the trouble of replanting, but also because the pepper plants usually have a higher infructescence with each new year. It's just a matter of doing the right thing at the right time to help this nightshade survive the cold winter months without significant damage. Read what you should pay attention to below.

room keeping

Peppers love warmth and can also be placed in warm rooms in winter for hibernation. It is particularly important that they do not come from the cold to the warm, but are brought in before the nights get cooler. If you miss this point in time, you run the risk that the peppers have already adjusted to the hibernation phase. Heat would then harm the plant because it would have to exert too much force to reorient itself through the warm temperatures.


  • bright and sunny
  • South window ideal
  • Ambient temperature: between 21 and 25 degrees Celsius
  • avoid dry room air
  • does not tolerate drafts

TIP: Since winter brings with it many gray days without sun, it is advisable to purchase and use artificial plant lighting. If the peppers get too little sunlight, they can die.


The peppers with the botanical name "Capsicum" have a higher water requirement than cooler standing plants. Basically, the warmer they are, the more often they have to be watered. The watering rhythm here is about every second day. The watering time can be optimally determined by the thumb test. Simply press your thumb into the earth's surface. If this gives less than two centimetres, it should be poured in moderately.

TIP: Since the Capsicum requires high humidity and heating air reduces this drastically in winter, it is advisable to spray the plant a little with lime-free water every day in addition to watering.


The peppers often get an unsightly appearance during the winter and give the impression that they are dying. However, this is not the case, but mostly just a natural reaction outside the growing season, which can be observed especially during the hibernation.

A mistake would be to attribute this to possible deficiencies and then, in good faith, give many nutrients via fertilizer. The plant has a significantly lower need for nutrients and minerals in winter, which is why it should not be fertilized, because it can quickly lead to an oversupply and, in the worst case, cause the Capsicum to die off.

To cut

In general, all pepper varieties should not be cut before overwintering in heated rooms, as the leaf mass maintains photosynthesis in winter and thus the chances of survival are significantly improved. Only yellow leaves and dried plant parts should be removed regularly. Leaves that droop and become unstable should not be cut off as long as they remain green.


If you have planted your pepper plant outside in a garden or vegetable bed, it should of course be transplanted into a suitable pot or tub for the winter so that it can be placed in a frost-free place. This should be done in late summer until the end of August/beginning of September so that it can take root in the new soil before the first cold nights set in and are not exposed to large temperature fluctuations during the changeover. However, it is not advisable to repot from pot to pot before wintering.

Winter cold

Cold air hibernation

The best way to hibernate is in a cold environment. Here the plant can pursue its natural hibernation and then thrive again in the following year. The "art of successful overwintering" lies in choosing an optimal location with cool but frost-free temperatures and not being carried away by the wrong care, because the plant shows itself more dying than alive. Perseverance and making the right decisions are required here.


  • bright with daylight to dark
  • the darker it is, the less demanding the plant becomes
  • avoid direct sunlight
  • never keep it at 5 degrees Celsius and never below
  • Ambient temperature for hibernation between 8 degrees Celsius and 12 degrees Celsius
  • high humidity
  • suitable winter quarters: stairwells or cellars

At the latest when the temperatures are around 5 degrees Celsius, it is time to let the pepper plant move into its frost-free, but still cool winter quarters.


The water requirement of the Capsicum is reduced to a minimum if it overwinters in the cold. If the humidity is high, there is usually no need for additional watering during the cold winter months. Otherwise it is only poured when the surface of the earth has visibly dried. If the plant is kept too wet, there is a risk of mold growth. Therefore, always ensure that excess water can drain away.

If there is a lack of humidity, the pepper plant should be lightly sprayed regularly. It is important to ensure that the pouring and spraying water is approximately the same temperature as the ambient temperature.

TIP: Before hibernating or moving to the winter quarters, the plant can be thoroughly soaked outdoors again, but without waterlogging forming. This measure usually saves you watering during the winter.


Pepper plants are no longer fertilized in cold winter quarters during hibernation. The last fertilization should be done before hibernation, before planting out or before moving to the winter location, at the beginning of September at the latest.

To cut

The pepper plant, which moves to a frost-free warehouse, should not be cut. The interfaces heal only slowly or not at all in high humidity and offer an optimal location for infections. In addition, the green parts contain energy, which the plant needs for the winter and which you would deprive it of if you cut it back.


For the winter, you only transplant from the vegetable patch outdoors, into a pot. The optimal time is the beginning of September, when the pepper plants are to be moved to a frost-free place. If possible, potted plants should be moved to winter quarters as a whole without repotting.

beginning of spring

end of winter/beginning of spring

Depending on the weather, the Capsicum usually ends its hibernation from the end of February/beginning of March, when the sun gets a little stronger, the outside temperatures are longer than freezing and the winter quarters also reach higher temperatures. Occasional, short-term frost or night frost will not stop them from ending winter as long as they remain in their winter quarters. From May the season for them to thrive begins again and they can move outside again.


If the winter is not too harsh, February is the best time to repot to encourage growth. However, you should always only use a slightly larger/deeper bucket or pot for repotting. Plant containers that are too large would demand too much strength from the Capsicum to form new roots, which would inhibit fruit formation. Since the paprika plants must not be exposed to frost under any circumstances, they should only be planted in the outdoor bed after the ice saints.


With increasing temperatures, the need for water increases. If it was repotted in fresh substrate in February/March, it should be kept evenly moist. If you don't repot, you will notice from the thumb test that it has to be watered more and more often before it goes outside.


Repotted pepper plants should be fertilized about six weeks later. If they are planted, the best time for the first fertilization is mid-May after the ice saints, when it goes into the outdoor bed. Water and nutrients are a must for the pepper plant to grow optimally. In order to promote strong roots, vigorous leaf growth, increased capsaicin production for more heat in some types of peppers and increased fruit formation, the fertilizer should be rich in the following ingredients.

  • nitrogen
  • phosphorus
  • potassium

spring cut

A slight pruning, which can be carried out around mid-April, is conducive to growth so that the first growth phase is stimulated and gets off to a strong start in May. To do this, all branches are cut back to the first node. If wilted leaves or dried leaves have formed during the winter, these should also be cut off.


An essential criterion for a successful hibernation is a possible pest infestation. The pepper plant is particularly susceptible to parasites that are drawn to humid areas.

These include above all:

  • spider mites
  • aphids

Since the Capsicum needs high humidity in winter and usually spends the icy months with a full, green leaf dress, it offers an optimal food source for these pests. Among other things, they feed on the sap found in the leaves, which weakens the plant as a whole and in most cases this nightshade plant does not survive the winter. It is therefore extremely important that you observe the following rules.

  • examine the peppers for pests before relocating them to the winter quarters
  • ideally repeat every two weeks at the latest during the entire winter period
  • If infested, carry out suitable pest control immediately


Overwintering the somewhat sensitive pepper plant is not that easy, but it is worth it, because with each new year it brings a larger harvest than a new sowing in a year will ever achieve. When overwintering peppers, it is important to pay attention to the small details, such as checking for pests, degree of drying of the soil and optimal humidity. If you also follow the instructions for suitable locations, it will also work with the successful overwintering of pepper plants, no matter what type and variety.

Help the development of the site, sharing the article with friends!