This study presents a novel method for preparing multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWNTs) grafted with a poly(2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate) (HEMA)-silver complex (CNTs-HEMA-Ag complex) through plasma-induced grafting polymerization. The characteristics of the MWNTs after being grafted with HEMA polymer are monitored by Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy. The chelating groups in the HEMA polymer grafted on the surface of the CNTs-HEMA are the coordination sites for chelating silver ions, and are further used as nanotemplates for the growing of Ag nanoparticles (quantum dots). Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) reveals that the particle size of Ag nanoparticles on the CNT surfaces increases with the Ag(+) chelating concentration, reaction time, and reaction temperature. Moreover, the crystalline phase of Ag nanoparticles is identified by using x-ray diffraction (XRD). In addition, high-resolution x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) is used to characterize the functional groups on the surface of the MWNTs after chemical modification through plasma treatment; it demonstrates that the growing amount of the Ag nanoparticles on the nanotubes increases with the Ag(+) chelating concentration due to the blocking effect of the Ag particles forming on the MWNTs.