This paper presents the data for the effect of adsorbent dose, initial metal concentration, solution pH, agitating rate and temperature on the adsorption of nickel(II) on waste tea. Batch adsorption studies have been carried out. The equilibrium nature of nickel(II) adsorption at different temperature (25-60 degrees C) has been described by the Freundlich and Langmuir isotherm. The adsorption capacity (Q(0)) calculated from Langmuir isotherm was 15.26 mg Ni(II) g(-1) at initial pH of 4.0 at 25 degrees C. The results of the thermodynamic investigations indicate that the adsorption reactions are spontaneous (Delta G degrees < 0), slightly endothermic (Delta H degrees > 0) and irreversible (Delta S degrees > 0). (c) 2005 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.