I told you I would let you know. Well...
As you know, I started out covering half a wall with dry plaster that I mixed with water. It set up really quickly, and was almost immediately impossible to spread. I'm sure it didn't have anything to do with the record-breaking hot weather we're having. I sanded it down after it took all evening and night to dry. A wasted day.
The plaster package recommended using pre-mixed all-purpose patching compound for jobs that required more working time, so I went and bought some of that and applied it to the same half wall. It was runny and gloppy. In other words, just as difficult to work with. Another night gone, I sanded THAT layer down. It had bubbled and cracked. By this time, I am really discouraged. I miss Bren, who has no cell service wherever he is in Canada, and I wanted to make a lot of progress in his absence.
I thought, "I thought this would be easier; I've had so much success with the joint compound." BING! The stuff I've been using to seal the seams in the cement board in the bathroom, which is also used with drywall, is the perfect texture for spreading smoothly, and it's totally meant to be sanded and painted. I don't know what the difference is between it and regular plaster, but when I gave it a shot on the other half of the wall, it turned out SO much better (And it's $2 a gallon). So I went out and bought 5 gallons, which I had to roll to the front door, it was so heavy.
I went over the whole wall with the joint compound, and I just need to sand down some of the imperfections before I can call one wall officially done. I have put a thin, hole-filling coat of it on two more walls, and they are ready for the smooth coat. And sanding.
This is a much larger undertaking than I had anticipated. I had really hoped to finish it before Bren came home -- maybe even have it primed.
Not so much.