Located at the Altona Library, the EnviroCentre brings is a central location for sustainability and environmental information.

It strives to provide the community with resources in the form of a selectively curated collection (books, DVDs, magazine, e-resources and equipment) as well as local environmental information on an interactive screen. In addition, an active events calendar empowers and inspires community members to be engaged sustainable citizens.

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EnviroCentre Collection

Hobsons Bay Seed Library

How does the seed library work?

The seed library is located at Altona Library.

Welcome to your community seed library! By ‘borrowing’ a packet you are making a commitment to return some seeds to the library at the end of the season.

It is important to take this commitment seriously as the seed library cannot continue if stock is not replaced. Pop a note in your diary for when your seeds are ready to harvest and return. You can return a different variety to the seed you originally borrowed.

I don’t know how to grow or save seeds!

We’re here to help! My Smart Garden is a free sustainable gardening education program that will help you grow food, shelter your home from the sun and wind, create home for native plants and animals, use water wisely and reduce waste. 

Hobsons Bay Libraries EnviroCentre have an extensive collection of resources on seed saving to help you grow, harvest and return your seeds.

How do I get involved?

This seed library is managed by people like you for the Hobsons Bay gardening community. Feel free to spread the word, organise these shelves and arrange seed swapping get-togethers. Small, portable seed libraries are available for loan to community events.

How to use the Seed Library

Borrow a Packet

Please consider others by taking no more than three packets each season.

Plant and Enjoy

Be sure to check what you’ve grown before eating food plants.


Leave one plant to go to seed to harvest.

Re-seed the Library

Package your seeds in the envelopes provided. Put a small pinch in each and label with the variety, your name and date saved.

Seeds to Share

Don’t share seeds for species that are considered weeds.

These seeds grow well in Hobsons Bay and have been generously shared by local gardeners. We hope they inspire you to try something new. By growing, saving and sharing these seeds you are adapting to a changing climate and preserving our seed heritage for future generations.

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Other Programs and Events

The EnviroCentre is home to a number of extra initiatives to help make the planet greener.

The EnviroCentre is home to a variety of taxidermied fauna on display (held under DELWP Permit No. 10010539), and community members and groups are welcome to display environmental initiatives or interests in one of our EnviroCentre display cases.

Workshops and programs are listed in our calendar of events, and you can subscribe to the Libraries eNewsletter to find out about upcoming events. You can also catch up with events across Hobsons Bay and sustainability tips with Hobsons Bay City Council eNewsletters Living Green, Ranger Ramblings and My Smart Garden.

Energy Efficiency

Our newer libraries are designed and constructed according to sustainable design principles to keep energy consumption to a minimum. Since 2013, work has been undertaken to increase the energy efficiency of the Altona Library. This has included extensive heating, natural ventilation through louvers and air-conditioning (HVAC), and LED light replacement work across the site. More recent additions have seen 62kW of solar panels and two Tesla batteries added to the site. This has resulted in a significant reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.

Get Involved

Hobsons Bay Libraries is committed to supporting environmental groups within the municipality. If you are passionate about environmental sustainability and would like to promote your group please let us know.

My Smart Garden

My Smart Garden is a sustainable gardening program managed by eight local councils across Melbourne, Victoria. The aim of the program is to build the resilience of local people living with a changing climate and scarcer resources.


Environmental Friends' Groups

Join a local ‘Friend’s’ group to help establish or maintain significant environmental areas and to raise profiles of local environmental areas to the wider community.


Hobsons Bay Wetland Centre

Hobsons Bay Wetland Centre Inc is a not-for-profit community group passionate about connecting people with nature.


Transition Hobsons Bay

Transition Hobsons Bay (THB) are a community group that is part of a growing international movement with a positive vision for a localised future. THB is part of the global Transition Network. We cover the areas from Spotswood /Kingsville to Altona/Seaholme.