Everything Angela did here was right on target! If she want's to move to CT she can start on my crew on Monday!
Stucco will stick to almost anything, but it wouldn't hurt to use the Ultra Prime. I also would take the time to seal the tears in the drywall with "Guardz" or "DrawTite" and fill flush, you never know what will show through a texture. Left unsealed, tears in drywall will blister under any water based compounds and that blister under a stucco finish would be hard to fix and have it coming out looking OK. I mix small amounts of texture with a hand whip, the kind a chef would use. My whip, however, is stiffer than most. One you would pick up in your typical kitchen store wouldn't be sturdy enough.