I just built a new deck on the south side of my house and I have been trying to figure out what to do for a natural shade. I would like to plant a tree on the sw and se corner of the deck about 15ft from the house and 30 ft apart. Any ideas of a fast growing tree that will provide shade soon rather then waiting for 15 years?
Japanese Zelkova (Zelkova serrata) is fast growing and vase-shaped, wider at the top, which works nice near a deck so you can still see through the lower parts of the tree. Lacebark Elm (Ulmus parvifolia) is also a nice fast-growing shade tree. Acer rubrum (Red Maple) is also a fast-growing shade tree.
Just remember, the faster growing the tree the more pruning and other annual maintenance involved.
I've lived in urban forest environments with arborists on City staff. Very approachable and helpful. You might see if yours has one? The parks department may or their maybe someone at your state university ag extension office. They should have suggestions for trees that will do well in your climate.