Our cigar plants have been in our front planter for at least 3 yrs. Just this year, a little shiny blue and black bug is eating the leaves.
It's hard to identify the bug from that description, but if you want to know what it is, catch one and take it to the county extension service, where they can identify it for you. This link will help you locate one: https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/garden-how-to/info/what-is-extension-service.htm
In the mean time, a few sprays with neem oil will probably chase the unwelcome guest off. Neem oil won't harm bees or beneficial bugs, only those that eat leaves. https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/garden-how-to/info/what-is-extension-service.htm
My cigar plant looks healthy but it's not flowering. Doesn't need fertilizer.
Review the growing requirements in the link below.
It certainly may be an issue with to much Nitrogen, this can inhibit flowering.
You can increase Phosphorous to promote blooms. Bone Meal is a good way to do this.
why are the leaves on my cigar plant red instead of green?
Leaves turn red in more sun locations and stay green in shady locations.
I live in North Carolina and was wondering if you could cut this completely back and it will return in the spring?
No. Unfortunately, this should be considered an annual outside of zones 9 and up. You can grow them in container, however. This will allow you to bring them indoors for the winter.
Here is an article for more information on the plant: