Fast Shade-Burn Baby Burn
Shade is the summertime magic word in Texas and trees are the natural choice. Add fast growing in the description and they can fall in the too good to be true category. Carefully check out the species that claim to grow like Jack’s beanstalk and you will see the dark side. Usually fast growth produces weak structure that can be easily damaged by wind and weather, and is more susceptible to insects and disease. Additionally, many fast growing trees are invasive species: ‘Chinese Tallow’, ‘Chinaberry’, and ‘Mimosa’ are in this list.
Personal experience has proved that quicker is not better. An Arizona ash Fraxinus velutina, I’ve heard it called Arizona trash tree, that sprouted in the pot of another plant, was installed in the yard. Planted for sentimental reasons, it was a seedling from the tree at our first apartment in Bryan, and it had the “benefit” of fast growth. About the same time we planted a Chinese Pistache, Pistacia chinensis, a moderate grower and a recommendation from a Brazos County Master Gardener.