The budworm is a wasteful feeder, chewing needles off at the base and webbing them to the tree. When the needles brown all at once, trees appear very unhealthy, but this may not be the case. Wait until later summer or early fall to evaluate tree health. Once brown needles are washed off by summer rains, green needles are easily seen. Trees with green canopy from the top down are still in pretty good shape. Trees with no needles on the canopy top are severely stressed. If the top turns white or silver, the tree most often dies.