I have a 3 1/2 foot Japanese Umbrella Tree that I have kept potted for 4 years with no problems. This year, although it was on a protected porch away from winds, all the needles turned brown. Is it dead? It appears to be, but I hate to throw it away in the event it will recover.
Japanese Umbrella Pine
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
It could be a watering problem. This article might help you:
Sunburn and cold weather could also cause brown needles. Check whether anything could have changed in the tree's conditions or environment.