Abstract A new regenerable adsorbent was successfully prepared by modifying maize straw (MS) with succinic anhydride in xylene. The succinylated-maize straw (S-MS) was characterized by FTIR, solid-state MAS 13C NMR spectroscopy, SEM-EDX and point of zero charge analysis. NaS-MS was successfully obtained after deprotonating the carboxylic acid groups of S-MS by Na2CO3 solution. Batch experiments were carried out with NaS-MS for the removal of Cd(II). The effects of pH, adsorbent dosage, contact time, initial concentration and temperature were investigated. The experimental data were best described by a pseudo-second-order kinetics and Langmuir adsorption models. Thermodynamic parameters (ΔG, ΔH, and ΔS) were also calculated from data obtained from experiments performed to study the effect of temperatures. NaS-MS could be regenerated at least five times in saturated NaCl solution without any loss. Furthermore, ∼97% of adsorbed Cd(II) ions could be recovered as the metal oxide. Finally, the adsorption mechanism of NaS-MS was discussed.